The bankrupt Zimbabwe government has clandestinely paid bonuses to members of dictator Robert Mugabe’s secret army, the Central Intelligence Organization (CIO) while claiming it has no money to pay public servants, it emerged.
Sources said the CIO operatives had received bonuses in December 2015. Some members of the army were also given the ‘thirteenth cheque’ despite the faltering national economy and depressed government revenue due to corruption.
Asked about this in parliament by Musikavanhu MP Prosper Mutseyami, vice president Emmerson Mnangagwa, the de facto boss of the CIO, flatly denied it.
“My supplementary question to the Vice President, Hon. Dambudzo Mnangagwa is, may you tell the nation in this National Assembly as to whether it is true or otherwise that regardless of civil servants, up to today, having not been paid their bonuses, outside the box, the Central Intelligence Organisation have since been given their bonuses in December?” Mutseyami said.
Mnangagwa replied: “I am aware that bonuses have not been paid to civil servants. I am not aware of the particular payment which he knows and I am not aware that that has happened.”
However, Mnangagwa is notorious for denying the truth in parliament. The CIO are his strongest backers in the ongoing factional wars within Zanu PF and ensured that he was not removed as vice president by Mugabe’s wife Grace Mugabe at the party’s December 2015 conference.
Mugabe relies on the shadowy spy agency for his personal protection and to eliminate opponents through assassinations. The highly secretive organization is reported to have about 300 000 operatives and informants operating at all levels of society.
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