Nqobile Tshili/ Leonard Ncube, Chronicle Reporters
PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa is today expected to publish the names of individuals and corporates who externalised funds and assets, three days after a top cleric said authorities must start punishing corrupt individuals.
Days after assuming office last November, the President issued a three-month moratorium running from December 1 to February 28 for all those who externalised funds and assets to return them with no questions asked.
When the grace period lapsed, President Mnangagwa extended it earlier this month by two weeks.
Announcing the extension, the President said he would publish the names of those people who ignore his call to return the funds and then the law would take its course.
“A statement will be released to inform you how much has come back and how much is in the process of coming back, and how much is still remaining outside,” said President Mnangagwa.
“We have given them another two weeks, but on the 19th of this month, we will publish those who have not heeded the call and the amounts they owe this country.”
Last Friday, the President said nearly $300 million has been brought back by individuals and corporates who took advantage of the moratorium.
“We have 1 166 cases of externalisation, now we have three categories, one category has brought in the cash. We thank them, we won’t publish their names. They have brought in nearly $300 million,” said President Mnangagwa.
He said some of the culprits have come forward to negotiate after they had invested the funds in securing foreign properties to the tune of $680 million.
The naming and shaming of the corporates and individuals comes at a time when a Roman Catholic priest Father Fidelis Mukonori, who brokered negotiations between former President Robert Mugabe and the Zimbabwe Defence Forces last year, said corrupt individuals must be punished.
Addressing a Chief Executive Officers’ Round Table in Victoria Falls last Friday, Fr Mukonori said perpetrators must be punished to end the vice.
“There are some people who stole money for 37 years and have not been punished. Others are saying I can do the same (steal) but the fact of the matter is that those who did it should be punished or hand it over as promised,” said Fr Mukonori.
The cleric was making a presentation during a panel discussion on “Value system for the cross over-dealing with healing, reconciliation, corruption, entitlement and other imperatives”.
Fr Mukonori said corruption is an abuse of the value system and challenged citizens not to accept property or money that does not belong to them.
“Value system or moral conscience does not allow one to accept a bribe unless if it (conscience) is corrupted. As citizens we should be moulded by following our value system in line with the 10 commandments,” he added.