By Anna Chibamu
THE Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (Zacc) late Thursday confirmed it had seized Tourism Minister Priscah Mupfumira but did not disclose the reasons behind the arrest.
President Emmerson Mnangagwa recently swore-in members of the Commission after public interviews conducted by Parliament’s Standing Orders and Rules Committee.
The eight commissioners joined High Court Judge, Loice Matanda-Moyo who was appointed chairperson following the resignation of members of the Commission in January this year.
In a statement on its micro-blogging social media Twitter handle, Zacc said it would issue a statement to provide information on developments.
“We can confirm that the Minister of Tourism (Mupfumira) is currently in our custody for questioning and possible due processes. We cannot respond to any questions at the moment as this is a live process. The press will be informed through a release later in the day,” the short statement said.
However, information gathered by NewZimbabwe.com indicated that Mupfumira had been arrested in connection with the National Social Security Authority (Nssa) forensic audit report in which she features prominently on the wrong side of the moral divide.
Parts of the report reveal that Mupfumira, then Public Service Minister, literally micro-managed Nssa, leaning on the board to give direction on where to invest millions, some of which may never be recovered.
Sources at Zacc also told NewZimbabwe.com that Mupfumira was likely to spend the night in custody.
“She will likely spend the night in custody. Investigators were questioning her all day and this is a complicated case that involves a lot of other people and institutions. All the dots must be put together and we don’t want to leave anything to chance,” NewZimbabwe.com heard.
Zacc seemed to have issued a warning hours before Mupfumira was picked up, with its Twitter feed giving indications of imminent action.
“Most people are raising concern on our action regarding the Nssa and the Auditor General reports. We have these and are working flat out to conclude investigations and allow the law to take its course. It’s a process, one that will yield results,” one tweet said.
In another tweet, the corruption fighting unit said: “We have received quite a sizable number of reports and tip-offs. Thank you very much to the engaged citizens who are partnering us in fighting corruption. You can be assured that all hands are on deck and our officers are working day and night to deliver on our mandate.”
Justice Matanda-Moyo has threatened to leave no stone unturned in her quest to rid the country of corruption with indications more high profile arrests are looming.
President Emmerson Mnangagwa has also declared zero tolerance to corruption but his critics argue his administration has done nothing but embark on a “catch and release” exercise given the lack of convictions.