AfricaCorona VirusZimbabwe

Zimbabwe health minister arrested over Covid-19 procurement scandal

By Almot Maqolo

Zimbabwe’s health minister Obadiah Moyo has been arrested over Covid-19 procurement scandal, the state-owned ZBC News Online reported, citing the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC).

“ZACC has confirmed the arrest of Health Minister Obadiah Moyo over Covid-19 procurement. ZACC spokesperson Commissioner John Makamure said Minister Moyo is detained at a Harare police station and likely to appear in court tomorrow (Saturday),” ZBC News Online said in a tweet.

The media for the past few weeks has pointed out skewed procurement procedures and price gouging in the procurement of Covid-19 related supplies. For instance, Drax International LLC is said to have been awarded a contract to supply personal protective equipment (PPEs) worth US$987 720 against a local market value of US$325 000.

Additionally, briefcase organisations such as Jaji Investments, a company registered in Namibia, is alleged to have been awarded contracts to supply Covid-19 equipment to the Ministry of Health and Child Care without going through a competitive bidding process. According to civic organisations, these cases illustrate endemic levels of corruption that flouts procurement rules and regulations.

Critics of the government say corruption of this nature indicates institutional weakness in procurement processes and lack of transparency processes in selection on government suppliers.<

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