By Nomalanga Moyo
15 March 2013
The National Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment Board (NIEEB) obtained an interdict from the High Court barring the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC) from searching and seizing documents from its offices.
Judge President George Chiweshe granted the order on Thursday with the consent of the corruption commission as well as co-respondents, police chief Augustine Chihuri and Attorney-General Johannes Tomana.
In a statement NIEEB, through its lawyer Gerald Mlotshwa, said ZACC had agreed to stop the searches.
The anti-graft body was blocked from carrying out two separate legal searches this week, after being granted search warrants by a High Court judge on Monday.
The warrants, signed by Justice Charles Hungwe, gave ZACC investigators the go-ahead to search the Harare-based offices of the Zimbabwe Mining and Development Corporation (ZMDC) and the NIEEB.
ZACC had also sought to search and collect documents from the offices of the Ministers of Mines and Mining Development, Indigenisation and Empowerment as well as Transport, Communications and Infrastructure Development.
In its application ZACC indicated that they wanted to search the three ministers’ offices for documents which “would assist in the investigation of the alleged corrupt deals” in the country’s indigenisation programme.
Regional group the Anti Corruption Trust of Southern Africa (ACT-Southern Africa) on Thursday slammed the deliberate interference by ZANU-PF politicians in the work of ZACC, calling it “disturbing.”
The indigenisation programme is a controversial ZANU-PF project in which foreign-owned companies must cede 51% ownership to locals. It has been hit with allegations of massive corruption and public fights involving senior party officials.
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