Mnangagwa fires tourism minister over US$90m graft charges

Tourism minister Prisca Mupfumira arrives at the Harare magistrate's court last Friday, where she faces seven corruption charges linked to the disappearance of $90m from the state pension fund when she was welfare minister.
Tourism minister Prisca Mupfumira arrives at the Harare magistrate's court last Friday, where she faces seven corruption charges linked to the disappearance of $90m from the state pension fund when she was welfare minister.
Image: Jekesai Njikizana/AFP

Zimbabwe President Emmerson Mnangagwa has fired his tourism minister over graft charges.

Prisca Mupfumira was placed in custody two weeks ago while awaiting trial after being charged with corruption involving the alleged disappearance of more than US$90m from the state pension fund that was highlighted in a National Social Security Authority (NSSA) forensic audit report.

In a brief statement, the president said he was relieving Mupfumira of her duties “for conduct inappropriate for a government minister".

Mupfumira - who was minister of public service, labour and social welfare before being fired by former president Robert Mugabe just under a month before the coup that unseated him in November 2017 - failed to get bail last week. She was said to be a flight risk. She reportedly has homes in the United Kingdom and has two passports.

Following her arrest there were calls from the MDC Alliance and independent legislator Temba Mliswa for Mupfumira to be fired.

Zanu PF spokesman Simon Khaya Moyo told TimesLIVE that the anti-graft crusade would not spare anyone found on the wrong side of the law.

“The president does not owe anyone protection. If people assisted him (in his rise to power) thinking that they will receive protection for their corruption antics, they are mistaken. No one joined Zanu PF to be corrupt. All corrupt heavyweights will be arrested,” he said.

Last week the Sunday Times reported that some senior Zanu PF officials had sought legal counsel in anticipation of ZACC raids.


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