Mugabe Says Clueless About Corrupt Cronies

Thursday, 23 February 2017  Radio VOP

HARARE - President Robert Mugabe has made astonishing claims he knew little about high level corruption by top officials he has continuously appointed into their government positions.

He was speaking during a wide ranging interview which coincided with his 93rd birthday on Tuesday. The interview was aired on ZBC-TV.

Asked why his government has seemingly been going after “small fish” in attempts to fight corruption, President Mugabe gave the most surprising of responses, saying this was to prevent them from growing into bigger fish.

“If small fish were real fish, one would say ah, fine we are catching the small fish,” he said.

“So, small fish have a tendency of growing big. So, you catch them before they grow big but this is a human situation.”

Mugabe said claims corruption was rife among top government officials have been unsubstantiated talk.

“I think the big fish more of it has been talk, talk, talk and talk," he said.

“We only hear so and so is corrupt. Well, this could be the case. Perhaps the big fish might also be capable of hiding their corruption. I don’t know. Or are people afraid to come out and even come to us and say so and so steals such amounts and we investigate that.

“For now we only hear big fish, big fish, big fish.”

Mugabe said Zimbabweans were in the habit of making corruption allegations against top officials without providing any evidence.

The Zimbabwean leader, speaking publicly for the first time since the country’s anti-corruption commission opened investigations against Higher and Tertiary Education Minister Jonathan Moyo, said he was told by the embattled minister his probe was politically motivated.

He did not make further comment on the matter saying he would wait for the outcome of the case.

Moyo and his deputy Godfrey Gandiwa are accused of embezzling nearly half a million in finances belonging to the Zimbabwe Manpower Development Fund (Zimdef).

Although Gandiwa has been arrested and brought before court, the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission has sweated to do the same on Moyo, a kingpin in Zanu PF’s factional wars.

There are strong beliefs President Mugabe is protecting Moyo, a G40 proponent that is fighting in the Zimbabwean leader’s corner within the Zanu PF succession wars.

Mugabe, in his comments, said he will allow his government to investigate allegations of corruption against his lieutenants but said he will not be dragged into politically motivated cases.

“I will investigate but I don’t want as political attacks as it were...if there is evidence we will pursue that evidence and certainly we will deal with the persons.

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