Mutsvangwa breathes fire…says First family has nothing to do with gold heist

INFORMATION minister Monica Mutsvangwa on Monday shielded the First Family from blame following reports that Henrietta Rushwaya accomplice in the gold smuggling saga implicated President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s wife and son.

Mutsvangwa said the accusations were not true, adding that the First Family had nothing to do with gold heists and other activities currently taking place in country.

Rather, Mutsvangwa said the New Dispensation had created a platform to combat corruption.

In a statement issued Monday, Mutsvangwa described the allegations against the Mnangagwas as malicious and aimed at soiling their name.

“I address you this afternoon on the back of several malicious reports that have sought to drag the name of the First Family (through the mud), by alleging that it had a hand in corrupt and criminal activities,” she said.

Mutsvangwa added that the ‘malicious’ and criminal allegations were deliberately being peddled by the country’s detractors, with the intention to create a bitter citizenry, in the process causing hatred against the President.

“These malicious reports that seek to link the President, His Excellency ED Mnangagwa and his family to corrupt individuals are by no means a coincidence.

“Rather, they are a well-coordinated attack on the system, which are intended to agitate Zimbabweans into demonstrations and uprisings,” she added.

Mutsvangwa said the Second Republic had pledged to fight against corruption as its core mission, adding that economic development relied on honesty.

“In his inaugural State of the Nation Address on December 20, 2017, His Excellency, President ED Mnangagwa, categorically stated that government would have zero tolerance towards corruption,” she said.

“Government has remained consistent in the fight against corruption and this has seen the establishment of a Special Anti-Corruption Unit and anti-corruption courts countrywide,” Mutsvangwa added.

“There has been capacitation of the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC) under the New Dispensation.

“ZACC now has arresting powers, including the financial and human resources capacity to carry out its duties,” Mutsvangwa also noted.

She said government would not be deterred by those still living in the past and continued to use tired tactics which had seen corruption flourish in the past.

“Bribery, embezzlement of public assets, fraud, smuggling, abuse of office for personal gain, extortion, misrepresentation, and other corrupt activities stalled economic development and ultimately rob citizens of decent livelihoods,” the minister said.