Friday, July 02, 2010

(TALKZIMBABWE) Biti admits has no anti-corruption policy

COMMENT - Tendai Biti should read "From Third World To First - The Singapore story", by former president Lee Kuan Yew. There are a lot of things that can be done about corruption.

Biti admits has no anti-corruption policy
By: Our reporter
Posted: Friday, July 2, 2010 12:39 am

INCREASINGLY frustrated Finance Minister Tendai Biti says his ministry does not have a credible anti-corruption policy, and is finding it hard to find a credible way of rooting it out within the civil service.

Mr Biti complains that corruption has become part of the civil service culture, adding that he is close to powerless when it comes to fighting corruption in Zimbabwe.

"The solution goes beyond the legal solution, because you can have 20 anti-corruption commissions in Zimbabwe but you cannot stop corruption," Mr Biti said, in response to a media question about whether his ministry had a credible anti-corruption policy.

The minister fell short of admitting that he was not doing anything at all to contain corruption.

The highly pessimistic Minister -- who at one point wanted Zimbabwe declared a Highly Indebted Poor Country despite its natural resources wealth -- said an anti-corruption programme in any case would be complicated.

"You need to deal with the structural issues that are at the epicentre of corruption. We need to deal with the corruption drivers," Mr Biti said.

"Some of the problems are shortages in this non-performing economy. This creates distortions and shortages and that is when middlemen arise. We have to deliver and match demand. We are now used to shortcuts," the Minister added.

"There are so many people who now have false role models, where you find a crook driving a Hummer, and you think that is a role model," he lamented.

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