The Herald (Harare)

Zimbabwe: Act Decisively On Graft - President

President Mugabe has called for decisive action against all people convicted of corruption, saying the anti-graft fight should be widened to include the private sector.The President and First Secretary of Zanu-PF said this at an Extraordinary Politburo meeting at the party's headquarters in Harare yesterday.

Party secretary for Information and Publicity Cde Rugare Gumbo said soon after the meeting: "On the issue of 'salarygate' and corruption, the President was very strong on that.

"He identified that the first thing was to prevent corruption and secondly to establish facts about corruption.

"He also said decisive action will be taken on the people who are found to have engaged in corruption. He also said corruption is not only in the public sector and parastatals, but is also rampant in the private sector. The President said we should also look into it."

Cde Gumbo said the Politburo did not discuss any particular cases of alleged corruption, but focused on graft in general and how it has affected ordinary people.

Three Air Zimbabwe executives have been arrested on fraud allegations that could have prejudiced the national airline of millions of dollars.

Apart from the Airzim issue, investigations have also been instituted at the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation where a number

of irregularities were unearthed, including exorbitant salaries earned by top management.

Cde Gumbo also said wrangling within Zanu-PF's Midlands provincial leadership was discussed, with the Politburo endorsing the executive list as submitted by Cde Olivia Muchena, who presided over the elections last year.

"On the Midlands issue we agreed that the basket which was submitted by Minister Muchena should be the basis of the Midlands provincial executive," he said.

Cde Jaison Machaya beat Cde Larry Mavhima to the chairmanship in the election but the latter disputed the outcome and the inaugural executive meeting last month failed to take place after it degenerated into a fistfight.

This prompted the ruling party's Commissariat to intervene and dissolve the executive. Minister of State for Masvingo province, Cde Kudakwashe Bhasikiti; Local Government, Public Works and National Housing minister Dr Ignatius Chombo; and his Environment, Water and Climate Change counterpart Cde Saviour Kasukuwere also briefed the Politburo on the Tokwe-Mukosi floods.

Dr Chombo said Government had approached a number of foreign missions and United Nations agencies for assistance and had received food and medicines, with the Namibian government providing two helicopters to airlift affected families.

Cde Kasukuwere briefed the Politburo on measures being taken to prevent flood waters from sweeping away the dam wall.

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