At least 132 people in Harare, including former Zanu PF political heavyweights, face arrest for allegedly selling State land, corruptly allocating themselves stands, fraud, abuse of cooperative funds and criminal abuse of office during Mugabe’s time.
This follows an audit report into Harare land sales by the commission led by Justice Tendai Uchena that traced the land transfers in urban areas since 2005.
Prominent names recommended for investigation in the Harare land audit report include former First Lady Grace Mugabe, former Cabinet Minister Dr Ignatius Chombo, ex-Local Government permanent secretary Engineer George Mlilo, ex- Cabinet minister Ms Nyasha Chikwinya, businessman Dr Phillip Chiyangwa, former Harare South legislator Mr Shadreck Mashayamombe and CAPS United vice president Mr Nhamo Tutisani.
Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC) chairperson Justice Loice Matanda-Moyo yesterday confirmed receiving a copy of the audit report, saying investigations were likely to start on Monday.
Amai Mugabe is accused of grabbing stands at Carrick Creach Farm in Harare and transferring ownership into the names of her relatives without payment. Some stands at the farm were allegedly allocated to people who were later pushed out by Mrs Mugabe, according to the report.
Dr Chombo, according to the report, should also be investigated for allocating himself vast tracts of land on the same farm allegedly registering several stands under three companies without paying. Dr Chombo is also under spotlight for allegedly corruptly facilitating Mrs Mugabe’s land grab.
The report states that Dr Chombo “unlawfully took several stands and registered them in the names of his three companies without paying for them, well aware that the farm had not been handed over to the Ministry of Local Government by the Ministry of Lands and Rural Resettlement.” The three companies were listed as Comverol Enterprises Pvt Ltd, Cayford Pvt Ltd and Cavford Pvt Ltd.
Some of the stands had been allocated to other beneficiaries, who were later allegedly pushed out by Dr Chombo. The Commission of Inquiry recommended that Dr Chombo should be investigated for abuse of office.
At the same farm, three Local Government officials – Mrs Rejoice Pazvakavambwa, Mrs Rhory Shawatu and Mrs Ruramai Chembwa – were also allegedly involved in illegal land dealings.
The Commission said all stands improperly allocated at Carrick Creach Farm must be recovered.
“Ministry of Local Government should recover the 50 stands unlawfully transferred to Arusome. It should also recover all the stands unlawfully taken and transferred by the former Minister Dr I. Chombo and former First Lady G. Mugabe.
At Ordar Farm, Dr Chombo is accused of unlawfully handing over acquired State land to Sensene Investments (Pvt) Ltd, linked to businessman Dr Chiyangwa. Dr Chiyangwa, according to the report, should also be investigated for alleged fraud after demanding, through his company Pinnacle Properties, payment from settlers at Stoneridge Farm in Harare.
According to the report, Dr Chiyangwa’s, whose company owned subdivision A of Stoneridge Farm, was offered alternative land at Tantallon Farm to pave the way for desperate home seekers.
Despite being offered alternative land, it came out that the businessman’s company continued demanding payment from the occupants, a development that was viewed as potentially fraudulent by the Commission.
Two police officers —Taruvinga Jindu and Watson Tundu — allegedly received stands to influence outcome of some land investigations they were conducting at Philadelphia Farm.