By Anna Chibamu
THE long-awaited Whistle Blower Protection bill has been approved by cabinet.
Addressing journalists at a press conference in Harare on Thursday, the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (Zacc) chairperson Loice Matanda-Moyo said the legislation would protect the whistleblowers from being victimised by corruption suspects.
“Very soon there will be a Whistle Blower Protection Legislation. Before this, a lot of victimisation for whistle-blowers had been rampant. The coming in of this legislation will protect them and this will enhance their willingness to partake in testifying against suspects,” Matanda-Moyo said.
“The principles for the whistle blower protection legislation have since been approved by the cabinet. In Zimbabwe, we had no such protection and there has been a lot of victimisation of witnesses and with the coming in of this legislation, our witnesses are going to feel protected and we believe that they are going to be willing to partake in testifying against the corrupt suspects as they will feel protected,” Matanda-Moyo said.
Matanda-Moyo also highlighted that the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) will this year deal with more than half of all reported corruption cases in order to clear the backlog of the cases that were still to be set down.
According to Justice Matanda-Moyo, so far 102 cases had been set down and were at various stages of prosecution.
Last year Matanda-Moyo reported that 180 corruption cases were still to be prosecuted owing to various reasons, with only 12 convictions.
“We agreed to have an increased prosecution of corruption cases after an outcry from members of the public that there was no movement in the prosecution of cases,” she said.
“A lot of documents have been sent to the NPA for prosecution. I am happy that there is movement in the prosecution of cases. 102 cases have been set down and they are at various stages of prosection.”
“The sub-committee on asset recovery noted that some cases had been set down before the courts for confiscation of proceeds for corruption. The cluster on political is coming up with pledges where political parties will commit to preventing corruption and promote integrity among their members. General compliance is also being encouraged in the corporates for good governance by the private sector and public enterprises,” she added.
Speaking at the se event, acting prosecutor general Nelson Mutsonziwa said the NPA had no challenges at the moment as there is no shortage of manpower, infrastructure to deal with corruption.