Corruption: Govt mulls assets seizure



JUSTICE minister Ziyambi Ziyambi has warned that corrupt fat cats would soon have their assets seized and forfeited to the State should they fail to account for their ill-gotten wealth as government tightens the noose on perpetrators of corruption.

Ziyambi announced the new measures in Senate last week while responding to a question by Masvingo senator Tichinani Mavetera (MDC Alliance) who had asked him to explain how government intended to deal with alleged cartels accused of bleeding the economy.

“Recently in the Press the Prosecutor-General said that cartels have captured various institutions in the country including the Judiciary and the media. I want to hear what government has so far achieved in fighting corruption because I think we owe it to the public to give them an explanation because they need to see tangible results,” Mavetera said.

Ziyambi admitted that corruption had indeed brought the economy to its knees.

“As government we are committed to fight corruption because it retards economic growth, but fighting corruption means that you are dealing with people with means (rich) and they use every avenue available to try and escape prosecution.

“To deal with one case of corruption needs a lot of money and you meet a lot of impingements and corruption is not isolated to Zimbabwe,” he said.

The Justice minister said as a result the country had come up with amendments to the Money Laundering Act to ensure that the Prosecutor-General can demand an explanation on unexplained wealth.

“If you amass wealth and the amount you earn does not correspond with it, the PG can go to court and get your wealth frozen. Failure to explain the wealth — it will be forfeited to the State.

“We are now using several methods to fight corruption and going forward you will see a lot of asset forfeitures,” Ziyambi said.