Break the silence, take action

HARARE - Early this year, Zimbabweans were jolted through media reports how predatory local elites were enriching themselves through drawing scandalous salaries and other perks by covert means which created the impression that government would swiftly nip the rot in the bud.

Ordinary people thought President Robert Mugabe would walk his talk as part of his election campaign narrative to fight all forms of corruption on the basis that corruption and lack of financial probity among loss making parastatal and quasi-governmental organisation executives misdirected resources meant to uplift the nation

But alas, time has passed, the excitement that corruption had finally met its Waterloo seems to have waned.

The disappointment and frustration has set in because of the blithe manner government has gone about dealing with and tackling the issue.

Zimbabweans are beginning to fear that the entire hullabaloo surrounding the corruption issue was a smokescreen decoy to divert attention from more pressing national matters.

Even our avowed resource nationalism intentions might have little road to run unless drastic steps are taken as a benchmark to forestall a few feathering their nests and persuade them to walk the straight and narrow.

Most see this semblance of benign efforts by government to come to grapple with core issues of corruption as a plaster patch solution to heal a gangrenous wound — a timid effort to tackle a cancerous blight.

A report by the Africa Progress Panel, chaired by former UN Secretary- General Kofi Annan, suggests that well-connected foreigners often purchase lucrative assets in Africa at prices far below market value, by offering inducements to predatory local élites.

Consequently, Africa’s resource wealth has bypassed the vast majority of the ordinary people and built vast fortunes for a privileged few. Frantz Fanon wrote of post-colonial Africa: “Concessions are snatched up by foreigners; scandals are numerous, ministers grow rich, the members of parliament feather their nests and there is not a soul down to the simple policeman or the customs officer who does not join in the great procession of corruption.”

That script is a mirror image of our nation at the moment, in sharp contrast to the aims and goals of our vaunted economic blueprint on whose successful implementation many people pin their hopes for an improved quality of life.

While the media has not relented in its endeavours to uncover and expose corporate and institutional resistance to financial discipline and malfeasance among executives, the public remains unsettled by official ambivalence to bring culprits to book.

People wonder and agonise silently whether the day when offending parties are made to account for their misdeeds will ever come.

Comments (1)

Why is the President hesitating to take his Presidential role against this so that he can clear his name and protect his image and guard our resources from galible leaders?

WATYOKA T . S. - 4 June 2014

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