THE Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Mines and Energy has resolved to meet former President Robert Mugabe at his private home instead of dragging him to Parliament to answer questions on the missing $15 billion diamond revenue, NewsDay has learnt.
BY VENERANDA LANGA
This comes amid speculative reports that the high-profile meeting could be held on Wednesday at Mugabe’s Blue Roof mansion in Borrowdale, Harare.
The chairperson of the committee, Temba Mliswa said his committee was comfortable with meeting Mugabe at his residence.
“The committee has already resolved that Kennedy Chokuda (Clerk of Parliament) must look at the issue of writing to Mugabe to appear before the committee, and there is pressure that there is need for transparency over the issue of the missing $15 billion revenue.
“Parliament is prepared to give the former Head of State respect and to meet him at his Blue Roof mansion because he is old,” he said.
Mliswa said the meeting was not meant to grill or humiliate Mugabe, but a fact-finding mission to break the puzzle over the missing diamond revenue, which the former leader alluded to at a public meeting in 2016.
“It is now up to the Parliament administration to get communication to Mugabe because his evidence will be critical in terms of us concluding our report. We need to do that before Parliament is dissolved for the 2018 general elections.
“As a committee, we can go to Mugabe’s house to meet him there to respect his age,” he said.
Chokuda yesterday could not confirm if they had already summoned Mugabe to appear before the committee.
“I am not yet sure if the letter to summon Mugabe was delivered because I have not been at work. However, he can be asked to appear before the committee if the situation warrants that,” he said without giving further details.
Several top government bigwigs have already been grilled over the matter. These include former Mines ministers Obert Mpofu, and Walter Chidakwa, ex-State security ministers Didymus Mutasa and Sydney Sekeramai, former Home Affairs minister Ignatious Chombo (Home Affairs) and Central Intelligence Organisation, police and the army bosses.