ZINARA has been in the news a lot lately. Recently I shared with you some of their latest developments. There was that one on the Frequent Travellers Express Pass (FTEP). I also shared with you the latest new vehicle license fees. Today I am here again with some more ZINARA updates. We shall be looking at some fraudulent activities that have been rocking them. We will also discuss a recent press statement that they put out regarding plans for roads rehabilitation in 2022.
Incessant Fraud Cases At Shurugwi Tollgate
Corruption and fraud have been a well-known menace in Zimbabwe and Africa as a whole. Often time people can just suspect that some shady things are happening but without any tangible basis. There have long been concerns about corruption or fraud at ZINARA. In 2021 the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC) even openly said that ZINARA and VID have normalized corruption in Zimbabwe. Recently it came to light that it has been happening and the tollgate in question was the Shurugwi one. In fact, in the past few days, more than a dozen ZINARA employees have been arrested.
It started with 2 senior staff at the Shurugwi tollgate being arrested. They were arrested for 234 counts of fraud totalling ZWL$6.8 million. It is reported that they would pocket money at the tollgate by using ZINARA swiping cards.
After those two, a few days later, 12 more employees were arrested – same Shurugwi tollgate. This time around the fraud involved around ZWL$9.8 million. It is said they were using fake tap cards. They would swipe them to give passage to motorists and they would pocket the money.
What I find very strange is that in 2021 it was reported that 7 employees from the same tollgate had been arrested for the same fraud-related issues. The amounts the employees were each pocketing at the time were staggering – at least ZWL$70 000 or US$200 per day.
We are in 2022, the same tollgate, and we are still hearing of the same modus operandi happening. I smell a big putrid rat there! From 2021 to now, 21 employees from the Shurugwi tollgate have been arrested for fraudulently pocketing the money. The total amount of money defrauded by those 21 people is roughly over ZWL$20 million.
Rebranding And 2022 Road Rehabilitation Plans
ZINARA held a press conference on the 22nd of February 2022. They highlighted that ZINARA is in the process of rebranding – more details on that will become clear in due course. They also announced that efforts were being intensified into rehabilitating roads in 2022. They indicated that ZWL$17 billion will be allocated towards that in 2022 as follows:
|Road Authority||Allocation (ZWL$)|
|Department of Roads HQ||6 337 065 357|
|District Development Fund HQ||4 527 047 879|
|Harare City Council||1 116 288 970|
|Bulawayo City Council||338 232 414|
|Gweru Urban Council||196 249 227|
|Mutare Urban Council||163 540 928|
|Masvingo City Council||122 170 765|
|Mashonaland East||519 666 261|
|Mashonaland Central||451 591 400|
|Manicaland||444 246 412|
|Mashonaland West||741 452 947|
|Masvingo Province||361 246 588|
|Midlands||661 434 426|
|Matabeleland North||524 610 864|
|Matabeleland South||495 155 562|
|TOTAL||17 000 000 000|
I am highly concerned about the fraud cases at ZINARA. It seems the responsible authorities have not been taking decisive action. On the other hand, One cannot help but think that there are top officials involved in this as well. Otherwise, how can the same issues continuously recur? Look at the Shurugwi tollgate – case after case, year in, year out from the same tollgate. What do you think is happening and what do you think must be done? Let us discuss this in the comments below.