CORRUPTION by Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) traffic officers is worsening to the extent that culprits were shamelessly demanding bribes in public, a report by the Anti-Corruption Trust (ACT) of Southern Africa claimed Monday.
Report By Everson Mushava Chief Reporter
In a statement ACT, a non-governmental organisation said the traffic police have acquired assets that do not tally with their salaries.
It said the assessment was carried out through observations, listening to discussions between drivers and traffic police officers and engagements with friendly police officers, drivers and passengers. It was observed that some police officers had accumulated wealth which they could not justify against their monthly salaries, according to the report.
“Using proceeds of corruption, some police officers bought vehicles and commuter omnibuses of their own which operate hassle- free and some have bought houses to name, but a few.
“The findings also suggest that traffic officers share their daily bribe takings with their bosses in the offices, failure of which theyrisk being transferred to non-lucrative assignments,” read the report.
The survey, conducted last month and released yesterday, showed that police officers manning checkpoints between Plumtree and Kwekwe were paid bribe money for which they did not issue any receipts.
“They were paid bribes at six (6) of the seven (7) checkpoints, which constitute 85,7% prevalence.
“The 8th incident took place on the 20th of October 2012 close to Redwood between Plumtree and Bulawayo,” ACT said in the report.
Police officers were demanding a minimum of $10 per every roadblock and the biggest victims would be vehicles with foreign number plates. There were too many checkpoints, causing unnecessary delays to travellers, according to the report.
In 2010, an ACT report — titled Mini-Assessment Report: Corruption by Traffic Police Officers and Vehicle Drivers in Botswana, Namibia and Zimbabwe — also showed that local police were the most corrupt in the region.
The report urged government and all responsible authorities to set traps and arrest culprits who were depriving government of revenue.
“It should be very easy for the management of the Zimbabwe Republic Police and the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission to catch the culprits red-handed and prosecute them,” the report stated.
Efforts to get comment from police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Charity Charamba were unsuccessful at the time of going to print last night.