AnalysisDr Mavaza Corner

Corruption in the ZRP: A smoke without fire

Let Zimbabwe Voice read this article for you!

BY DR MASIMBA MAVAZA

In Zimbabwe, it is very rare for politicians holding ministerial positions or senior officers to resign on their own without a hint of scandal. So it has become common for people to create scandals for others so that they can resign.

Sudden resignations are not explained at the time; however, within a few days before resignations paid whistle blowers start criticising their target accusing them of not supporting the vision, notably the fight against corruption. If these political pariahs were witness to wrongdoing during their time in office why the deafening silence at the time? Is our system really bereft of checks and balances that these so called “selfless” Zimbabweans like Themba Mliswa had no confidence in speaking up? And if that’s truly the case, what benefit is there to speaking up now?

Perhaps I would take some of the allegations seriously if real evidence was forwarded to the Prosecutor General or SACU. Or send information to the President’s office or even one of the newspapers for a detailed exposé when other avenues are closed, instead of the daily verbal volleys we’re being subjected to in the social media. It’s classless and self-defeating.

Themba Mliswa has ordained himself a fighter against Police General Commissioner Matanga Is this whistle blowing or is this personal vendetta. Whistleblowing is the disclosure of ingroup wrongdoing to an external agency and can have important functions for the regulation of moral and legal conduct. Further, social psychologists have so far paid little attention to this phenomenon, or else have tended to subsume it within analysis of dissent.

For a disclosure to be a qualifying disclosure, the person making it must reasonably believe that what he is alleging tends to show that one or more of the listed types of wrongdoing has occurred. It will not be a qualifying disclosure if it can be shown that, given the information available to the person at the time the decision to disclose was made, it was not reasonable for him to believe that it tended to show the relevant wrongdoing.

One who blows the whistle must not have prior problems with the one he is attacking in the whistle blowing.

If Themba the Whistle blower is allowed to continue spreading falsehoods in the name of whistle blowing many innocent people will be injured in the process. A disclosure made will only be a qualifying disclosure if, the blower also holds a reasonable belief that the disclosure is made in the public interest.

Necessary belief that the disclosure is made in the public interest protects both the blower and the public.

Zimbabweans have been entertained by Temba’s personal attack on Matanga passing it on as whistle blowing. We have discussed Matanga on this platform.

Godwin Tandabantu Matanga is a senior Zimbabwean law enforcement officer. Matanga is the current Commissioner-General of the Zimbabwe Republic Police. He was named acting Commissioner-General after long-serving ZRP Commissioner-General Augustine Chihuri retired in December 2017. On 12 February 2017, the Public Service Commission announced Matanga’s appointment as the substantive Commissioner General.

This did not come easy Matanga was the underdog. There were other people who were fighting for his position. One of them is Deputy Commissioner General Mutamba who is Temba Mliswa’s friend. The rush to soil Matanga’s name is simply a way to get Mutamba into Matanga’s position.

The issue is very clear Temba is being corrupt in his wanting to be a whistle blower. Mutamba is turning sixty and he is likely to be retired at that stage. So his camp is now in a hurry to have Matanga removed so that Mutamba becomes the PCG. This is the reason why Temba Mliswa is being given any dirty on Matanga so that it smears.

Following his return from Mozambique, Matanga was attested into the Zimbabwe Republic Police as a patrol officer in October 1982. He acquired vast experience in the Zimbabwe Republic Police, rising through the ranks to Deputy Commissioner General a rank that he held until his elevation to Commissioner of Police.

Matanga is a fighter by nature and many mistake his softness for a weakness. During Chihuri’s time Matanga endured persistent attacks as the fight to succeed Chihuri heated up.

It was reported that Matanga and Matibiri were battling to succeed Augustine Chihuri. This was before Chihuri’s renewal of contract as the Commissioner General in 2011.

According to reports the cause for the battle followed the then Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s statement that Chihuri should leave office.

After this battle Matanga rode through sustained attacks on his person and his character. On 2 February 2021 the UK government imposed sanction on Godwin Matanga for what has been termed gross human rights violations, the evidence used by the British government to impose sanctions on Matanga was provided by senior police officers who are opposed to Matanga’s appointment as Commissioner General.

Because of unofficial reports from another camp in the police The state security minister, intelligence director, police chief and leader of the Presidential Guard were sanctioned for their alleged role in the deaths of Zimbabwean protesters who died during an uprising and attack on democracy by the MDC A supporters. Chamisa called his supporters stupid.

A travel ban and asset freeze has been levied on the four men, meaning they can no longer travel freely to the UK nor channel money through Britain’s banks or economy. They are held responsible by the UK Government for the worst human rights violations against the people of Zimbabwe since President Emmerson Mnangagwa took power in November 2017.

It is sad that those who sided with the UK government in imposing these sanctions are senior serving members of the police with some telling Interpol that Zimbabwean government launders money.

Due to the power struggle in the police force aided by Temba Mliswa four men were sanctioned, these are Owen Ncube, Zimbabwe’s minister for state security; Isaac Moyo, director general of the Central Intelligence Organisation; Godwin Matanga, commissioner general of the Zimbabwe Republic Police; and Anselem Sanyatwe, commander of the Presidential Guard and Tactical Commander of the National Reaction Force.

They are the first individuals from the nation to be designated under the UK’s new autonomous Zimbabwe sanctions regime following Britain’s departure from the EU.
So the implications of Temba Mliswa’s unwarranted Twitts are beyond measure.

Temba Mliswa is actually destroying the image of the nation and of our police force.
While we appreciate that whistleblowing system has become standard in preventing corruption, fraud, embezzlement, money laundering and other malpractices we must be careful of the under hand of the whistle blower.

There are several compelling reasons for wanting to advance a theoretical understanding of whistleblowing. First and foremost, whistleblowing is a critical instrument for a group, organization, or society to promote and uphold its moral standards. It is an important mechanism for preventing and detecting organizational wrongdoing

This is particularly important in the context of the increasing complexity and reduced public visibility of many organizational practices.
Whistleblowing like other forms of defiance; can help to correct ethical breaches that are sometimes costly to society. Without it, unreported organizational wrongdoing may continue, fester, and even become the organizational norm.

Certainly, whistleblowing may create instability for an organization in the short term, but it can also help to reduce organizational costs in the long term. In this case Mliswa is creating whistle blowing to create disunity in the police force. The idea of Temba Mliswa and those supporting him is to create mayhem in the police force which will undermine Matanga’s authority.

In this case whistleblowing can prove critical for an organization’s prosperity or its very survival. This exactly what Mliswa and his team are hoping to do with the police. How far can Mliswa and his team go in order to bring down Matanga. Through his hatrade of Matanga Mliswa brought sanctions on four security chiefs.

Mliswa is getting the information which he is distorting from senior police officers opposed to Matanga. The point they obviously do not care to see is that their fight against Matanga is affecting our nation. Not least, this is because a whistleblower’s report of wrongdoing by their workgroup to an oversight unit in the same organization can help avoid negative publicity and legal issues associated with public reporting, if the report is dealt with effectively so that the organization itself does not become complicit in the wrongdoing. But Mliswa in his stupidity mistakes administrative issues and corruption issues.

Mliswa is attacking Matanga in his personal vendetta. Mliswa’s actions are not to say that whistleblowing is necessarily or inherently a moral act. Some whistleblowing may be designed to harm the organization against which it is directed, for example, where it arises out of disgruntlement. Even when the actions of whistleblowers are subjectively motivated by moral concerns, they may be perceived by others as ill-considered and as having immoral (or at least problematic) side effects. Mliswa’s actions are designed to destroy Matanga together with the whole police force.

Mliswa’s whistle blowing primarily serve the whistleblower’s own interests, and takes the form of a vendetta against an organization. Temba Mliswa’s whistleblowing involves deliberately passing on misleading or inaccurate information. We refer to “wrongdoing” as any illegal, immoral, or illegitimate act (or omission) as judged by the perceiver. Following this, our interest must be how members of that group, knowing about the wrongdoing, then respond.

It is thus apparent that Mliswa and his disgruntled police team are implicated in the motivation to engage in whistleblowing in order to topple Matanga.

Looking at the way Temba Mliswa is bringing in scandals only aimed at Matanga shows a serious targeted misleading of the nation by Temba Mliswa.

Mliswa must look at the process which was used to purchase cars in 2017. Matanga was not the commissioner but deputy. All the scandals Temba is jumping up and down as if he a lunatic who has picked up a whistle are childish and deafening.

The whistle blowing is coming from a fraudster who grabbed the whole business from a whiteman.

Temba holds a serious grudge with Matanga which dates back from the days he was arrested foe litany of offences. Temba believes that Matanga was influential for Temba’s arrest.

Temba has gone away with a lot of crimes. He assaulted chief Murinye when Temba wanted to expel chief Murinye from his farm in Karoi.
Temba caused untold sufferings and beat up several people in Hurungwe he can not stand up now and pretend to be a saint.

Temba is systematically attacking Matanga with the hope that his own crimes will be forgiven. Temba does not understand that the Administration department falls directly under Deputy Commissioner General Administration. Its core mandate is to avail financial and material resources to the whole organisation for its constitutional obligation.

The following sections fall under the Administration department. These are;-
• Administration
• Finance
• Transport and Logistics
• National Quartermaster
• Information and Communication Technology
• Economic Planning and Surveillance
Each section has a specific mandate as follows;-

Administration department
Projects falls under this department. Projects oversees the administrative running and functioning of all police projects (farms, canteens and messes, cottages and clubs)

Finance department
Responsible for efficient and effective distribution of the available financial resources in a manner that steers the organization towards attaining its constitutional mandate.

Printers
Printing and production of police related literature. (Reference books, police forms, police receipt books and police identity cards).

Transport and Logistics
Acquisition, distribution, maintenance and disposal of vessels, vehicles and related equipment.

National Quartermaster
Procurement, distribution, management and disposal of all material resources excluding transport and ICT.   Construction also fall under this department and  is mandated with the construction and maintenance of office and residential accommodation in all police establishments.

Information and Communication Technology
Provides nationwide communication capability to the organisation by way of wireless and computer networks.

Economic Planning and Surveillance
To give a positive image of the ZRP by marketing its products, issues to do with recruitment and activities related to social obligations for good corporate governance.
In 2017 Temba must remember that Matanga was not the Commissioner General. Chihuri was. All the financial issues were run directly by Chihuri and his sisters and his wives. There has always been a fight with Chihuri for transparency.

For Temba to make it appear that all this was the fault of Matanga is insanity.
The Police force is Para military and it is a security organisations. There are many aspects in the Police day to day business which are not for public consumption. Temba must know that the Finance department is an arm of the Zimbabwe Republic Police established in terms of the Police Standing Orders Volume 1.

The department offers support function towards the force finance administration and control. The department has the overall responsibility for management of the organization’s cash-flow and ensuring there are enough funds available to meet the day to day financial obligations.

The department has dedicated and suitably qualified staff in financial matters. The finance department in the Zimbabwe Republic Police is in charge of Management of both Government and Force financial resources. It Provides an objective perspective based on financial assessment techniques that support key strategic decisions.

It deals with the Preparation of the organisation’s budgets, forecasts and to report back on the progress against these throughout the year.

It further deals with the Approval of routine financial policy matters. It works in Liaison with the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development.The day to day running of the force funds and Consolidated Fund lies in the finance department. It is in constant Liaison with other police departments and sections on financial matters.

The finance department works in Dealing with all administrative matters which have financial connotations. So it is surprising how Temba believes that this is done by Matanga alone.

Finance department sections
The Zimbabwe Republic Police, Finance Department has its Directorate located at Police General Headquarters and has 17 Finance Clerks decentralised into police provinces so that the organisation finance, administration and control is maintained at high level of efficiency.

In this way there is no way Matanga could have a hand in the finances.
Temba has produced receipts which shows serious involvement of other officers in this matter.

Temba must be warned that the “very legitimacy” of the service risks being undermined unless more is done to take issues of integrity more seriously.
The actions of Temba and his police section which is using him forget that integrity, such as how police deals with the media and how officers conduct themselves, must be treated with a “greater sense of urgency and dignity. There is no dignity in rushing to Twitter.

More needs to be done by the service, and with a greater sense of urgency, if the public is to have confidence that it takes integrity matters seriously and is gripping them effectively.

High profile cases of alleged police corruption, other criminal behaviour and misconduct will have a detrimental effect on the reputation of the service.

This has implications not only for the effectiveness of police activity in fighting crime (which requires public engagement and involvement based on trust), but also ultimately for the very legitimacy of a public service many wish to hold in high regard. Temba’s actions are contrary to public morals.
The police must be warned about the dangers posed by social media such as Twitter and Facebook. It is a shame that Temba and his handlers believed to be employed by the police being critical of the police or the government.
The inappropriate behaviour by Temba and some officers is seen in comments on police protocol or procedure,this brings negativity towards police work. This has caused some officers to have extreme opinions on government.

The force anti-corruption and standards units should challenge their own chiefs over their integrity within the police force to preserve the public confidence.

Temba Mliswa is not only after Matanga he is after the very government which he has scandalised on social media.

He has caused the slapping of sanctions on the security chiefs because he is trying to get to Matanga.

Zimbabwe must not be held at ransom by Temba Mliswa. He might have his supporters but he must learn to respect the police.

Vazet2000@yahoo.co.Uk

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