Call for Sandura type probes


This file photo shows former Judge President Wilson Sandura meeting President Mugabe. Justice Sandura headed the inquiries into the 1980s vehicle scandals.

Felex Share Herald Reporter
Government must commission an inquiry on the lines of the Sandura Commission of the late ’80s to probe obscene salaries and operations of executives of all parastatals, legal experts and political commentators have said.This follows revelations that top managers of some parastatals and local authorities are taking home huge salaries and perks while their organisations wallow in debt and deprivation.

The experts said only an inquiry would help stop the rampant pilfering of State resources by people mandated to oversee the operations of quasi-Government institutions.

Mr Terrence Hussein of Hussein and Ranchod Legal practitioners said alleged corruption in state enterprises such as the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation, Air Zimbabwe and PSMAS warranted a commission of inquiry.

“The cases need an inquiry because it seems the so-called corruption is widespread. It looked like it was one organisation but it seems there are many parastatals in that category,” Mr Hussein said.

“Usually it is the President who calls for that inquiry in terms of the (Commissions of Inquiry) Act and he does so because he would have seen the gravity of the matter.

“Investigations are normally done through the police and organisations themselves and the President in this case would rather take the route of an inquiry if he sees that the two methods will not get to the bottom of the matter. The President can appoint investigators under the Commissions of Inquiry Act if the matter is for ‘public welfare’.

Reads the Act: “The President may, when he considers it advisable, by proclamation, appoint a commission of inquiry consisting of one or more commissioners and may authorise the commissioner or commissioners or any quorum of them specified in the proclamation to inquire into the conduct of any officer in the public service, the conduct of any chief …, the conduct or management of any department of the public service or any public or local institution, or into any matter in which any inquiry would, in the opinion of the President, be for the public welfare.”

Another lawyer Mr Norman Mugiya said the abuse of anything of national interest called for a commission of inquiry.
“All issues that have a national interest which fall under a particular ministry should be administered with utmost transparency.
“The person at the helm of the ministry concerned or who is above him like the President is not a police officer neither is he an investigator and the only way he can articulate issues in his ministries, in this case corruption and other obscenities, is by establishing a commission of inquiry.

“An inquiry would, on his behalf, source for evidence on what could have happened and it is also a framework on which police can start investigations.”

Former Attorney-General Mr Sobusa Gula-Ndebele said an inquiry was an administrative issue.
“If something is not clear and answers are needed then an inquiry can be commissioned,” he said.  “It all depends on the level of corruption to determine who sets up the commission. It might be the President, ministry or any other body.”

Said lawyer Mr Dumisani Mthombeni: “Where there is reasonable suspicion that an offence of this magnitude was committed, like in this case, a commission of inquiry should be established because the corruption is rampant.

“Parliament, in its oversight role has recommended that Cuthbert Dube be prosecuted. You do not just start by prosecution but by making an inquiry, look into the goings on in parastatals and after gathering evidence you recommend that police open a charge.”

He said those accused of corruption should be blacklisted and have their assets forfeited and returned when they are cleared.
Mr Cyprian Ndawana said an inquiry was necessary because the community had “screamed foul”.

“A dismissal does not satisfy the community and what we need is an inquiry followed by prosecution and restitution. They should give back the things they ill-got from people. It is an opportunity to rid ourselves of tendencies of enriching ourselves at the expense of societies.”

Other callers urged Government to capacitate the Anti-Corruption Commission so that it can act on allegations of rampant abuse of state resources.

Justice Wilson Sandura presided over the Sandura Commission which claimed the scalps of several political leaders in the wake of a vehicle scandal, commonly referred to as the Willowgate scandal.

In December 1988, President Mugabe appointed a three-member panel, the Sandura Commission, to investigate allegations of the resale of cars bought at a cheaper prices from Willowvale Mazda Motor Industries at ridiculously high prices.

A provincial governor and five Cabinet ministers eventually resigned when they were implicated in the scandal. For more than seven weeks, the commission called 72 witnesses, including six Cabinet ministers, two deputy ministers, three Members of Parliament, two senior army officers and 40 directors and managers of private companies.

Zimbabwe has 66 State enterprises and parastatals.

Pin It
  • kurait

    Kana zvadai zvanaka! Second Sandura Commision (SSC 2014)

    • N. Sithole

      A second Sandura Commission? We had one in the 80s sir. Perhaps you mean a third one. Revisit your archives.

    • Chihambakwe commission

      Kana commission ikaitwa then mozodii. Vakaba pa Sandura commission vakaitwa seyi. Ko ye War victims compensation commison inquiry yacho yakaguma neyi, Kwozouya iye iye ye housing futi zvakafamba seyi. Handiti vana vevhu vakadya zvemunyika mavo. Matambudziko edu haasi kukonzerwa navo asi ma sanctions.

  • Rubbich

    This should also happen in the private sector. Companies are closing because executives are looting as well. They blame harsh economic conditions for their looting, and then close businesses. How come other companies are doing well?

    • Kivalo

      Private companies have shareholders that should fire incompetent management or fire the board that approves excessive perks. There is not excuse for private sector its just that Zimbos are always watching corruption even if they have the power to stop it

    • Zvanyanya

      You are very right.It appears as if we have forgotten that in the private sector as well some executives are getting as much as USD30,000 whereas the least paid is getting USD180.Honestly is this fair enough.Funny enough those companies that have been receiving accolades for “Best Performing Companies” being recognized and yet they have such exploitation tendancies

    • Ensign Tongs

      Unfortunately private companies can pay their bosses whatever they want. If they have made a board resolution, that is their business. Parastatals serve the nation, so they should be held further accountable especially with regards to the salaries they are paying themselves especially if the organisation is not performing

    • Jotham

      The private Sector is the worst dirty place. Company Directors and all top Managers are earning my friend whilst the common worker is languishing in poverty. They drive the latest of cars, live in the upmarket suburban houses, and they go to say mari hatina yekuwedzera vashandi. Vakuru vama Companies(both private/public) are greed satanists.

  • Marufu Marufu

    ZIMRA should also be investigated- their salary perks are out of this world

  • Pasi nehuori

    This is a great initiative – let us have people with the country at heart looking into these issues because if we put corrupt people into these commissions they will be paid off by the rich buggers and the rich buggers will go off scot free.The commission should also look into the handsome payouts that the executives might get as ‘golden handshakes’.Enough is enough!A country can only
    take so much abuse!

  • ndodahondo2

    Nothing will ever happen

    • Mamvemve

      An inquiry is going to open a can of worms which could bring down the current govt. Mugabe and his men have also been dipping their hands in the till and they obviously cannot start pointing figures at others. This is why Morgan and MDC should have stayed out of the unity govt; they would have been in a strong position to mobilise their supporters and take to the streets to demand change.

  • Mai vevana

    Funny enough you were interviewing lawyers, another corrupt bunch of people! You can buy your way out of a custodial sentence if your pockets are well lined!

  • mommsy

    I surely hope an inquiry is done because forced resignation is not enough, he still walks away with the money he has been stealing and what is left for us?? nothing…saka hapana fairness apa, another CEO or GM will come and do the same because he or she knows kuti i will be ushered out of the building with my perks, everyone should be accountable for their actions!!!!!!!

  • Dehwa

    Varume batai munhu

  • Mupinyu Wasvotoka

    Now in the midst of all this Corruption of amazing scales the “Patriots” no longer talk about Zim problems being caused by Sanstions. Shame on the govt and ZANU for destroyn this country

  • Saul Tsuro

    This is the Herald I used to read in the 1990s, call a spade a spade. Can we extend these investigations to include parastatatl bosses and CHEFS who got prime farms but are doing absolutely nothing at those farms. This is preducing the state of income. The guys are doing nothing at the farms because of “these corrupt salaries”.
    If Zimbabwe can do away with this cancer of corruption and return to accountable governance our economy can pick up with or without sanactions!

  • mabwe

    Reporter you forgot to mention that Cde Maurice Nyagumbo went on to “commit suicide” because of the findings of the Sandura commission.

  • walt123

    let the commission be established and let justice prevail, we want to see ZBC being able to improve publicity.

  • Pafunge

    I say NO to these commissions that will hide everything from the public. Vanhu ngavabatwe one-one, vachisungwa vachidzorera zvavakaba zvese through a criminal justice system for fraud and economic high treason

  • Fadzai Sandura

    this is great. remember the willowvale scandal?

  • mazvita

    Good idea, let it be.

  • Guru

    the question to ask is what is the one constant that has been there pamascandal ese aya necorruption yese iyoyi. The answer is very simple its Zanu pf & Robert Mugabe. maybe they are the ones that need go

  • Samanyika

    Those who sabotaged the nation must face the music. Sanctions were not totally western-induced, our own kith and kin are also responsible for this mess. Let them face the music. Show them Mr President, alongside Prof Johnso.

  • james

    Include Kereke/Gonogate!

  • Pfumo

    ndatenda hangu



  • Tuksedo

    Being private doesn’t give a company the right to exploit. The poverty datum line is a standard protected under domestic and nternational human rights laws.
    People are being made to work under duress, for years now, on no more than bus fare, staff lunch, and the occasional $40-$50, or whatever, to keep them coming back. Pay these people!
    How else do you jump start a binary economy?

  • Observant

    I’m afraid to say that Zimbabwe is now being run like The Gambino Family, *** being The Don (Carlo), CIO’s and ministers being the sidekicks and The military and lastly but not the least, Chipangano, foot soldiers. They can get away with murder as long as they are well connected and are everywhere. All I can say is that it feels like deja vu once again as we have been there, done that and no convictions came about. I’m afraid to say this but I feel that it’s now a case of, if you can’t beat The Cabal then you might as well join them, sad to say it, but true though.

  • Chi

    While a “special enquiry team” has its merits, in my humble opinion, this particular route is unnecessary and possibly a waste of time and resources. What may be appropriate is a simple professional audit by professional audit firms. In the case of the Public Sector there exit various Oversight Committees which may be reconstituted in need to be reflective of the new transparent approach. These committees would be tasked with deliberating the outcomes/findings of said audit and recommending incisively a “lasting” and constructive course of action in each instance (prosecution included.). Surely it is time for the Public Sector to operate efficiently utilising the systems and structures already in place.

  • Chi

    it is important when commenting to refrain from personal and general attacks without substantiation!!! We are a country of highly educated and knowledgeable people, let us have mature meaningful constructive debate!! Believe it or not, this is the time to seriously build Zimbabwe. For example what part has ZANU PF or even the President played in the particular salaries saga under discussion?

  • ubit

    I find this CEO with no case to answer because they signed a contract which was given to them by the board of directors (govt). so for one to fire them today will actually make them sue the govt and will win.,,,,,, if one offers a house maid $3000 a month and make them sign the contract,,,, will the house maid at faulty?

  • Take 5

    I am sorry with the Dube-es because at the moment pangodzi Dube people even in music people tend to rush open to think its cashbet story again

  • Tuksedo

    Kkkkk catchy

  • Ziziharinanya