OUR institutions are palpably corrupt and the corrupt are apparently powerful.
According to the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (Zacc) chairperson Justice Loice Matanda-Moyo, there is rampant corruption at organisations that are supposed to fight graft such as the Zimbabwe Republic Police, the Judiciary and the National Prosecution Authority (NPA).
“The biggest risk we have in fighting corruption is corruption itself. Our institutions are not free from corruption, be it Zacc, the police, the NPA or the Judiciary,” Justice Matanda-Moyo said in a speech to mark the United Nations Anti-Corruption Day which is celebrated globally on December 9.
Big reveal, except it was not. We have heard all this from other do-gooders heading some of those institutions.
In February this year, Prosecutor-General, Kumbirai Hodzi told the nation that this country was in fact being run by powerful cartels that had invaded all levels of society.
“The cartels are responsible for most of the high-level incidents of corruption and the nature of the cartels cuts across all the institutions, the media, the legal profession, the Judiciary, the NPA itself and all other institutions that are mandated to fight corruption. Members of the public and businesspeople are also involved in those cartels,” said Hodzi at the time.
Sadly, he likened the corruption fight to performing brain surgery because any interference in how the cartels operate could end up causing more damage that intended.
So, we now have two people leading key institutions telling all and sundry about the rottenness of the systems they are presiding over but none has yet told us what they are doing to fight it.
Matanda-Moyo told us that Zacc was investigating members of the Judiciary and prosecutors over allegations of corruption, but also said they would not be naming anyone because it would be seen as an attempt to undermine the independence of the bench.
“We have several files where we are investigating members of the Judiciary but we can’t go to the Press with that. Some of our officers have already faced disciplinary hearings and they have been relieved of their duties,” she said.
Phew. We are not waiting with bated breath.