Third MP arrested for abusing development fund

The MDC-T MP for Pumula was on Thursday arrested by Anti-Corruption Commission officials, on allegations of abusing the Community Development Fund (CDF). Albert Mhlanga was detained at the Donning Police Station in Bulawayo and becomes the third MP accused of plundering the parliamentary fund.

Albert Mhlanga
Albert Mhlanga

Mhlanga is accused of failing to account for US$7,000 from the US$50,000 initially given to him. He has also failed to explain three other dubious transactions. In one instance he transferred US$32,000 to Bulawayo Plumbers, a company which he owns and which he claims supplied goods, when it had not.

In another transaction he transferred US$9,000 into a bank account in the name of Alex Company. A further US$2,000 was transferred to his friend’s company, Silver Sharp.

On Monday Franco Ndambakuwa, the ZANU PF MP for Magunje, was arrested on allegations of abusing the same fund after failing to account for US$39,000 from the US$50,000 he received to develop his constituency. The week before the MDC-T MP for St Mary’s, Marvelous Khumalo, was also arrested on the same charges.

Khumalo is accused of having bought himself a lorry and pocketing 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. Both Ndambakuwa and Khumalo are out on bail.

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.

Zimbabweans have taken to social networking forums to vent their anger at the corruption shown by their elected representatives. “This is what happens when you put hungry people in parliament,” one SW Radio Africa listener wrote. Another said “they should be locked up in jail and the keys thrown away.”

“Hopefully, all this is not like the window-dressing of an empty shop! Many such cases were conveniently filed away never to be heard of again. Such is the state of our police force and the judiciary,” Chimbi Manwa wrote on our website. SW Radio Africa

Post published in: News
  1. Pythias Makonese

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