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Farm mechanisation scandal must be investigated: ZAPU

by Iphithule Maphosa
26 Jul 2020 at 10:56hrs | Views
  • Whereas ZAPU is the pioneer advocate for good governance and rule of law;
  • Whereas the mother party abhors a government with no ethics, transparency and accountability;
  • Whereas ZAPU notes with concern the endemic corruption pandemic prevalent in both public and private sectors in our country;
  • Whereas the mother Party realize that the corruption pandemic is not the sole preserve of the ruling regime but has sucked in opposition parties and the civic society;
  • Whereas we note, with great regret and concern the willingness by many in authority in various spheres of society and governance, not only to cover the  corruption up but also participate in, evade and facilitate evasion of due process of apprehension and bringing to book the culprits;

Zimbabwe African People's Union, ZAPU wishes to draw attention to the 2007/8 Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe farm mechanization scandal and point out the deliberate and well calculated exposure and possible compromise of all arms of government by the well-organized looting party led by the then Reserve Bank Governor, Gideon Gono which ended up touching all sectors of the economy.
ZAPU notes the blatant, well calculated and choreographed plan to buy the silence of both the legislative and judicial arms of the Zimbabwean state by deliberately compromising the gullible members of Parliament and those in the judiciary.  Members of Parliament from both of the House, the ruling and opposition became beneficiaries of the looting scheme and as a consequence failed in their duty to hold the Reserve Bank and the executive to account.

The same applied to the judiciary, with the judges benefitting from the loot they absconded their function to uphold the law, instead participating in the corrupt acts of looting of the country's reserve bank and defrauding taxpayers.

Sitting members of parliament and serving judges who  benefited from this particular loot will never in this lifetime interrogate, let alone question the legality of the scheme as well assist in the recovery of the huge debts owed to the state. Their silence was guaranteed.

It is sad to note that Gideon Gono, then governor of the Reserve Bank was allowed to abuse state funds and procurement procedures to buy the silence and loyalty of legislators and the judiciary to facilitate and cover up one of the biggest cash heists the country has ever seen. It goes without saying that his approval of such blatant abuse of state resources was because he too benefitted greatly from the maladministration.

There was wanton law breaking where government procurement procedures were totally bypassed, ignored and disregarded. The reserve bank suddenly became responsible for procuring, a function that, under normal and legally compliant circumstances should be by way of a tender process by duly appointed agents.

The Reserve Bank was supposed, by law and constitution to appoint a commercial bank to disburse the loan facility to deserving and qualifying beneficiaries. The commercial bank would have been expected to identify suppliers of farm mechanization equipment and make payments directly to farmers.   

Of concern to the country and to ZAPU were the criteria used to select the beneficiaries? We completely condemn the use of scarce resources by the regime and its enablers to enrich themselves at the expense of the masses. What due diligence was there to show that the resources were being invested in the right places and to bring value to the country? Has anyone assessed the impact of the profligacy?

We hear from Jonathan Moyo that he just received a call while he was in Tsholotsho that farming equipment was on its way to his farm. He didn't even know what that equipment was, meaning he had not even applied for it. How many more benefited in the same manner? What lay behind simply dishing out costly resources to people such as was reported? To buy their silence? We even hear that some people didn't even have farms but got the equipment, which they simply hired out and perhaps sold!

As a party whose beliefs are anchored on good governance pillared on ethics, transparency and accountability, we call for a commission of inquiry to establish what transpired resulting in the sucking in of so much of the people's money. We call for investigation and possible prosecution of former reserve bank governor Gono for abuse of office. We demand investigations into the judiciary involvement in this and possible action taken against the compromised officers. We demand the same scrutiny of the legislature and executive. We demand repayment in full of the loans by every recipient. We believe that this is one huge scandal which could even be much bigger than Willowgate. Nothing short of a properly constituted Commission of Inquiry must look into this scandal and bring closure to what appears to have been one of the biggest fraudulent activities by the regime.

Iphithule Maphosa
National Spokesperson

Source - Iphithule Maphosa