Parliament summons Mugabe over looted $15 billion diamonds revenue

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Former president Robert Mugabe will appear before the Mines and Energy Portfolio committee to explain how the $15 billion worth of diamonds were looted in Marange, according to Temba Mliswa.

This follows his claim in 2015 when he was still president that the precious stone worth that much was stolen from the country’s only diamond fields.

The committee, chaired by independent legislator Mliswa, is investigating the matter among other issues including human rights violations and the joint ventures which saw many state-linked firms mining diamonds in the area.

Many government entities and departments have been appearing before the committee in the last year while many remain elusive.

This Friday, Jabulani Mukoko, chief security officer for Mbada and a former police superintendent, told the committee that about 200 armed police officers, led by a superintendent Murenga and officer Benaya Marodza, unprofessionally, unannounced and forcefully took over the mine resulting in looting in February 2016.

Mliswa then requested commissioner general Godwin Matanga to bring in the named officers and all the critical rank bosses from Marange on the 9th of April when the committee sits again to hear evidence from all the involved entities.

However Matanga requested that the named police officers be exempted from revealing on whose orders they acted.

“In order for them to be in Chiadzwa obviously there was an order coming from somewhere so it will be very unfair to say who ordered you to do this and that,” said Matanga.

“Can I ask this house to ask the authorities how this came about because at the end of the day it might not be easy for me to say I was ordered by so and so? Can that be verified before the 9th of April so that when I come here I will be sure what to say?”

Mliswa, responding to the request, said parliament has a constitutional duty to uphold accountability and transparency even when it involves the executive.

“You will answer questions pertaining to your role as commissioner general. The committee has equally resolved that the former president will equally come. He only comes when we have heard from all institutions he was responsible for so we are leaving no stone unturned,” declared Mliswa.

He also added, “After your lecture (Ignatius Chombo), we then found it prudent to invite the then minister of Home Affairs the vice president (Kembo) Mohadi, minister of Defense Sekeramayi and minister of State security Didymus Mutasa. So we shall be writing to them.”

Among those who were also present to explain themselves was former Home Affairs minister Ignatius Chombo, former Mines minister Walter Chidhakwa, former Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation chair Goodwills Masimirembwa, former Mines secretary Prince Mupazvirihwo and Home Affairs secretary Melusi Matshiya.

Zimbabwe Consolidated Diamond Company, Marange Development Trust, Anjin and Gianyame mine was also represented.