- Playing godfather: Wicknell Chivayo (left) shops in Paris this week
Former Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority (Zesa) senior executive and Mabvuku member of parliament James Maridadi has accused the parastatal’s bosses of corruption, citing the award of energy contracts worth $400 million to convicted criminal Wicknell Chivayo’s firm.
Maridadi, speaking during debate in parliament Tuesday on the Special Economic Zones Bill, said corruption was the reason Zesa could not consistently supply electricity to Zimbabwe.
“This problem of electricity in Zimbabwe is not because ZESA is not able to generate enough electricity but it is because of corruption,” Maridadi said. “Look at the tenders that ZESA have given to people, people without even a cent. ZESA has given tenders worth 400 million to people of dubious background and dubious character. As long as we have not dealt with the issue of corruption we can talk in very glowing terms about special economic zones but as long as the corruption that we have in this country is as it is, it will not work.”
Zesa awarded contracts in murky circumstances to Intratrek Zimbabwe, a company which Chivayo runs in partnership with fugitive Zambian drug dealer Ibrahim Sildky Yusuf and his son Tariq Yusuf. Zesa has said it is reviewing the tenders but Chivayo, who is close to president Robert Mugabe’s wife Grace Mugabe has threatened to sue the government if the tenders are nullified.
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