ZANU PF MP arrested for diverting community funds

The ZANU PF MP for Magunje was on Monday arrested on allegations of abusing the Constituency Development Fund (CDF). Franco Ndambakuwa failed to account for US$39,000 from the US$50,000 meant to develop his constituency.

Franco Ndambakuwa
Franco Ndambakuwa

Ndambakuwa becomes the second MP to be arrested after Marvelous Khumalo, the MDC-T MP for St Mary’s, was arrested last week for abusing the same fund. Khumalo bought himself a lorry and pocketed part of the money. He claimed to have used part of the funds to sink a borehole in his constituency, but in fact it had been done by an NGO.

Meanwhile it’s reported that Ndambakuwa was detained at Rhodesville Police Station in Harare and was expected to have appeared in court on Tuesday. Other MP’s likely to be arrested include Cleopas Machacha (MDC-T, Kariba) and Peter Chanetsa (ZANU PF, Hurungwe North).

Although Constitutional and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Eric Matinenga initially said 10 MPs (6 from ZANU PF and 4 from the MDC-T) had failed to submit returns proving how they had used the US$50,000, it appears several have since provided evidence of how they used the money for developmental projects.

Some of the MP’s initially reported as having failed to submit their returns, include Ministers like Sekai Holland (National Healing), Lucia Matibenga (Public Service) and Douglas Mombeshora (Deputy Minister of Health). It appears most have submitted their returns.

According to Matinenga some 65 audits have been done and the problem constituencies remain St Mary’s, Hurungwe North, Magunje and Kariba. Two of those 4 MP’s (Khumalo and Ndambakuwa) have already been arrested.

Meanwhile Ndambakuwa is not new to controversy. Last year he was arrested on allegations of raping a 15-year-old girl, with claims that 10 more rape charges were hanging over his head. The previous year he was accused of impregnating a 17 year old girl, who later committed suicide under unclear circumstances. – SW Radio Africa News

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