HARARE – There are concerns that most detectives working in the Zimbabwe Republic Office(ZRP) Central Investigations Department’s fingerprints section are reportedly taking bribes from citizens wanting fingerprints for vetting.
By Farai Maphosa
Investigations carried out by TSTnews have revealed that while the traffic section has been dubbed the most corrupt by the public and the media , the CID Fingerprints section is also equally corruption-infested with most of its detectives living large.
TSTnews spoke to some members of the police who divulged how citizens are being robbed of their hard-earned money for a cheap public service while enriching the lives of many of the detectives working in the CID Fingerprints section.
“What is happening at the CID’s Fingerprints Section hurts a lot because the amount of money a citizen has to fork out for him to facilitate the vetting of fingerprints is astronomical given that the fee is less than $ZW50 but one has to part ways with a minimum of 5USD to bribe the detectives in that section,” said one police officer who requested anonymity.
According to the police officer, citizens have no choice but to pay the bribes because failure to do so will mean one has to endure a lengthy period to have the fingerprints screened or vetted.
“Citizens are being coerced to pay bribes because of the time one would have to wait for the fingerprints to be screened or vetted ,” added the police officer .
Another police officer revealed that the CID Fingerprints section is one of the busiest department because of a number of people seeking its services which include prospective tertiary students for state universities and colleges, prospective government employees, students granted foreign scholarships and Diasporans in need of police clearance among many others making it a fertile ground for bribery.
“The section is one of the busiest owing to a number of citizens requiring its services and these include students who want to enrol at state institutions ,civil servants awaiting deployments and students who would have received foreign scholarships and bursaries.
“This then breeds corruption as the detectives will then ask for a ‘facilitation fee’ ,”he said.
A detective working in the CID Fingerprints section can serve on average 10 people a day which translates to US$50 if all the people pay at least US$5.In a month the detective can make an average of US$1 000 which is quite lucrative given that the government is salary now is around $ZW 3000 approximately US$60 .
TST news gathered that most of the detectives in the CID Fingerprints section afford flashy lifestyles driving fuel guzzlers like Subaru,BMWs and Mercedes Benz and this is not going down well with other police officers in other departments who think it’s high time lifestyle audits are taken seriously.
Efforts to get a comment from Director CID hit a snag but previously the police has refuted the allegations of bribes saying this was being done by criminal elements masquerading as detectives though investigations by