Gweru.A Local governance expert, Vincent Chakunda this week called on
legislative framework that ensures that public officials declare their
assets to avoid looting and abuse of public resources.
Speaking in Gweru at a public finance management workshop organised by
the Zimbabwe Coalition on Debt and Development (Zimcodd), Chakunda
said it was ironic that despite their low salaries and allowances
civil servants and politicians became rich people overnight with
“Government employees and other public officials should have wealth
that is traceable,”Chakunda said. “We can’t have public officials who become millionaires overnight. We should have a public management system that ensures that public officials do not generate wealth through corruption.” he said.
Chakunda said the the public management Act should be strengthened to
deal with graft, which he said had destroyed the economy of the
country. He said it was disheartening that public officials who got their
wealth through corruption were being condoned as enterprising people
when they should in fact be arrested for such offences.
Chakunda added that there was need to deal with institutionalised corruption which he said had become a cancer in the country. “We may have good laws but as long as we don’t transform government institutions in the way they operate we will continue to face serious corruption,”he said.
Experts say some of the wealthiest people found in Zimbabwe come from
senior civil servants and politicians.
In 2009 then Speaker of the House of Assembly, Lovemore Moyo, promised
that he would fight to ensure that all legislators declared their
assets to be kept at Parliament in the assets of register.
The pledge by Moyo however suffered a stillbirth with critics suggesting that it was resisted because most public officials have “skeletons in their cupboards.”
Representatives from local authorities in the Midlands province also
agreed there was need to deal with corruption in both central and
local government levels