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4 VID Depot officers face probe

by Staff reporter
05 Mar 2024 at 04:54hrs | Views
AT least four Vehicle Inspectorate Department (VID) officers based at Chitungwiza Depot are facing investigations on allegations of soliciting money from people acquiring driver's licences and learner's licences.

Yesterday, Transport and Infrastructural Development Minister Felix Mhona and a team from his office visited the depot unannounced after receiving messages and anonymous letters sent to his office alleging corruption at the depot.

During discussions with driving instructors and the public waiting to take their tests at the depot, the names of the four examiners were continuously being mentioned, prompting the minister to order investigations.

Minister Mhona confirmed the developments and said the officers were likely to be moved from the depot as investigations continued.

"This was a surprise visit here at Chitungwiza VID. The purpose of us coming here together with my team from the ministry and VID officials from head office was basically to drive and run with the vision of His Excellency Cde Dr Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa that we don't tolerate corruption in this land. So we are here to demonstrate to the people of Zimbabwe that whenever we say we have a listening President, he is saying I want you to go and descend on VID.

"Why VID? Because several anonymous letters were coming through stating we have problematic officers but I said at times you need to be on the ground to hear for yourself.

"So I came here unannounced to engage the officials and the stakeholders who are very important as they deal with issues of testing. And as have you have seen, I have engaged with the citizenry, those who were waiting to be tested for the provisional licences and also for the certificate of competency, which is the road test, and also the stakeholders — the instructors.

"But you know the problem is it takes two to tango and at the end of the day you have seen that whenever you address people on issues of corruption at times the people don't open up, but eventually if you engage them bilaterally you hear more," he said.

The Minister said he was glad that as he was in discussion with instructors, he now had the names of problematic examiners at VID Chitungwiza.

"And I clearly said to them, whenever it comes to corruption, we are saying the Commander-in-Chief, His Excellency Cde Dr Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa is saying there is no room for those corrupt officers in the Second Republic.

"So basically what we are going to be doing is to engage. My team is going to engage and interrogate and also carry out engagements with the officers that have been named and shamed. And we are saying in the meantime, come this week, we are going to be moving those officials from here so that they don't continue victimising our people.

"So basically this is what we are going to be doing and I can say this authoritatively because I am running with the agenda of His Excellency, Vision 2030 that we want to be prosperous and empowered.

"But we cannot be empowered if we are having corrupt tendencies amongst ourselves. So we are here today and you will see me going around the country unannounced as well as to other depots to ensure that we nip corruption in the bud.

"So I am happy that, yes, as well as you (the media) are the ambassadors. You need to disseminate the information and also there were messages that were on the social media about the officers who are manning Seke-Chitungwiza Road.

"So I also came here to witness, enquire and to say what are we doing about that," Minister Mhona said.

The minister also took time to chat with some of the people who came to write their provisional tests and others who were being tested to get their driver's licences.

"But the idea at the end of the day is to say the work ethic of the Second Republic is to fight corruption."

"We have got four whose names featured prominently. We cannot close the entire depot but I am saying there is a presumption of innocence. I am not saying they are guilty but what we are saying is we need to continue investigating. But we cannot continue having the same officers at this depot.

"Why? Because of the dangers of us leaving those officers, the next time that we want to engage they will be bragging to say we are here and even those who come from head office came and left us here.

"But this is what we are demonstrating to say if you have been named, we will investigate you. We are also going to have this platform availed to the people of Zimbabwe. We have got a toll-free number and if you think there are corrupt tendencies, please let us know.

"And we are also saying we are not going to be waiting for these unannounced visits but we are saying let's continue engaging the citizenry so that we fight corruption together. I am sure, the four, as we then transfer them and bring them closer to where we can monitor them, we will do our investigations and if they are found guilty, then we will dismiss them."  

A local businessman and founder of Ring Driving School Mr Onias Sanangura applauded Minister Mhona for the engagement that he made with them yesterday.

"It's one of a kind and we would want to applaud him for the efforts he is making in the fight against corruption. We are responsible for training prospective drivers and sometimes we also have strategies to fight or reduce corruption," he said.

Source - The Herald
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