TOP Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra) executives are panicking over recent revelations by The NewsHawks of corruption involving the tax collector’s multi-million-dollar whistle-blowing fund as they scramble to cover their tracks.
This comes as Zimra officials have launched a witch-hunt to establish who among themselves is leaking information to the country’s new leading investigative journalism platform.
Following recent stories on corruption, Zimra officials have been discussing how to resolve outstanding controversial whistle-blowing cases, including one involving whistle-blowers Norman Nyabadza, Dennis Martin Macharaga and Evans Kujinga – who previously reported notorious Harare land baron Felix Munyaradzi for tax evasion involving US$12 million.
Zimra has compromised whistle-blowers amid an internal fight to take charge of the process, give it to their associates and share the whistle-blowing proceeds.
Zimra executives held a meeting on 20 May at their headquarters at ZB Centre in Harare, at the corner of First Street and Kwame Nkrumah Avenue, to discuss outstanding cases and leakage of information to the media.
The fire-fighting meeting was attended by Regina Chinamasa (commissioner revenue assurance), Edward Phiri (chief investigations officer), Mavuto Maseko (investigations – attended virtually), Nyabadza (whistle-blower) and Macharaga (whistle-blower).
Kujinga, who has collected millions of dollars from Zimra for whistle-blowing, also joined the meeting virtually. The meeting discussed cases that need to be resolved and who was leaking information to The NewsHawks, top sources at ZB Centre say.
Further, a confidential email sent to those who attended the meeting shed more light on issues tackled and Zimra officials’ anxieties. The email, dated 31 May, was written by Kujinga. It highlighted the witch-hunt over information leaks and purported to have found suspects who were giving media information.
“Good morning. In line with our resolution of our meeting I’m writing to you about my preliminary findings pertaining to leaks to online media of our confidential 34B (meaning Section 34B of the Revenue Authority Act) cases,” Kujinga writes.