Willowvale flats saga deepens

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The Willowvale flats saga deepened yesterday amid disclosures a top police officer, Assistant Commissioner Robert Masukusa, who allegedly owns three properties in Harare, was reportedly allocated a flat for his nine-year-old child after paying a $10 000 deposit ahead of civil servants.

The disclosures yesterday showed that only people with financial clout and could pay
$10 000 as deposit got the flats in preference over civil servants, who were asked to pay $3 600. The government employees are yet to be allocated the flats.

The Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Public Works and National Housing said it had discovered that a senior civil servant, Masukusa, who already owns three properties in Harare, managed to secure a flat after paying $10 000 deposit for his child born in 2003.

Masukusa refused to tell the MPs his station in government, but would only say he was a civil servant.

However, it has since been established that Masukusa is a top cop who was embroiled in a shooting incident in which he was accused of allegedly shooting dead a street kid over a cellphone in 2009.

The portfolio committee chaired by Mutasa North MP David Chimhini is investigating the housing scheme following reports minor children, some aged between eight and 13 years, had benefited ahead of deserving civil servants.

We have completed investigating the Willowvale flats housing issue and it has been revealed that the whole process of allocating these flats was not transparent, said Chimhini.

The anomalies are going to prompt us to investigate other housing schemes in the country to see the magnitude of corruption in housing allocation.

The committee discovered during interviews that most civil servants had not yet been allocated the flats although they were entitled to them.

An NGO employee, Joyleen Magobeya, was allegedly allocated two flats at Willowvale.

Magobeya reportedly declined to be interviewed by the committee, but seconded her uncle who confirmed the two flats had been registered under her two children Anesu Cheryl Ndoro and Shingisai Ndoros names.

The committee heard one of them was now based in South Africa while the other was still at school. Chimhini said his committee would produce a report on the Willowvale flats issue and table it before Parliament.

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