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Wadyajena sucked in Cottco looting scandal

by Staff reporter
13 Jul 2022 at 07:19hrs | Views
CHAIRPERSON of the parliamentary portfolio committee on land and agriculture Justice Mayor Wadyajena has been implicated in the Cotton Company of Zimbabwe (COTTCO) looting scandal after allegations police raided a warehouse that he used to store inputs meant for distribution to farmers.

Sources said police officers raided the warehouse at Gokwe Nembudziya shopping centre at the weekend and recovered COTTCO farming inputs stockpiled there.

The inputs included seed, sprays and fertilisers and filled three trucks. Police also recovered bicycles and motorcycles.

They are originally part of the presidential farming inputs scheme programme but sources said were diverted to aid Wadyajena's political interests in the area.

Police spokesperson assistant commissioner Paul Nyathi confirmed the development and indicated the matter was now being handled by the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC).

"The matter is being handled by ZACC; may you call John Makamure (ZACC spokesperson) for a comment on it," said Nyathi.

Makamure had not picked up calls made to him by time of publishing.

Sources also said Wadyajena enjoyed very cordial relations with COTTCO bosses managing director Pious Manamike and its marketing and business development manager, Maxmore Njanji, who are currently appearing at the Harare Magistrates Court facing corruption allegations.

Wadyajena is also Gokwe Nembudziya legislator.

"Cotton inputs which filled three trucks were recovered at a warehouse over the weekend. It was earmarked for distribution to Hon Wadyajena's cronies around Gokwe North," a source said.

"The inputs are part of the presidential input scheme bankrolled by the Government of Zimbabwe to support poor farmers in rural areas. However, Hon Wadyajena used his parliamentary portfolio committee chairmanship and proximity to the COTTCO bosses to loot inputs, sprays, bicycles, motorcycles for his campaigns.

"Real farmers are not benefiting anything from Cottco. Wadyajena use these government sponsored implements for his personal campaigns and this has caused a lot of discomfort in the party (Zanu-PF) here. The poor are no longer benefiting. He gives these to his well trusted campaigners who in turn sell these to the local farmers."

Villagers who spoke to, are now demanding an audit of all inputs that were meant for them.

Senior Zanu-PF members in the province are also calling on President Emmerson Mnangagwa to act. They cited his ‘zero tolerance to corruption' mantra in their call.

"What we know is that the president never tolerates corruption and we must-see all-party members, especially those in leadership follow suit. The whole constituency is celebrating right now after the police raid and they want things to be rectified before the farming season begins," one of them said.

Njani was arrested on June 30 this year on allegations of abusing COTTCO inputs to fund his political ambitions.

In May this year, President Emmerson Mnangagwa indicated that he would crack the whip on corrupt COTTCO bosses.

Source - NewZimbabwe