ZANU PF Manicaland chairman Mike Madiro and the party’s expelled provincial youth chair Tawanda Mukodza were reportedly arrested yesterday over an alleged litany of corrupt activities which include extorting close to $1 million from diamond mining companies in the province.
Report by Phillip Chidavaenzi/ Obey Manayiti
Madiro, whose arrest came after the party Presidium comprising President Robert Mugabe, his deputy Joice Mujuru, national chairman Simon Khaya Moyo and secretary for administration Dydimus Mutasa had resolved to suspend the pair on Thursday, was nabbed at his Odzi farm, sources said last night.
Police could not immediately confirm his arrest by the time of going to print, but highly placed sources in Manicaland told NewsDay that the party provincial chairman was at Mutare Central Police Station where he was being interrogated.
Earlier, Mutasa had told journalists that Madiro and four of his subordinates — Mukodza, youth secretary for security, Admire Mahachi, youth secretary for information and publicity Masimbakuvanhu Kangai and former district coordinating committee chairman for Mutare urban, Clever Muparutsa — had been suspended from the party to pave way for police investigations.
“The Presidium met yesterday (Thursday) and decided to suspend the people we are going to announce and we are therefore happy to state that following allegations of fraud, corruption, theft, embezzlement and dishonesty levelled against (them), the party hereby announces the suspension of these members from any party activities with immediate effect in order to stop them from interfering with ongoing investigations,” Mutasa said.
He said the decision followed a preliminary police report made after investigations into the matter were opened.
“The police were asked to investigate allegations against these people and they have made a report, a preliminary report to the President and it is upon that preliminary report that these suspensions are announced,” he said.
He said Madiro’s deputy Dorothy Mabika will run party affairs in the province as she had not been caught up in the corruption dragnet.
Mutasa said there would not be sacred cows in the party’s quest to deal with corruption.
“The party has been talking again and again about the need for clean leadership and these people are suspected to have been involved in matters of corruption, matters of embezzlement and dishonesty.”
Apart from the diamond proceeds, the Manicaland provincial leaders reportedly looted an unspecified number of cattle meant for last year’s 21st February celebrations and a truckload of Presidential agricultural inputs meant for the province.