Zimbabwe: Mobile Registration Exercise Under Probe

THE Civil Service Commission (CSC) is investigating the mobile registration exercise which is being conducted by the Registrar-General’s (RG) department amid reports of alleged corruption.

In September last year, the RG’s Office rolled out a three-month mobile registration exercise for national identity cards and birth and death certificates in preparation for voter registration.

RG Tobaiwa Mudede implored aspiring voters to obtain machine-readable plastic national identity cards to be used for biometric voter registration.

The mobile registration exercise was supposed to end in November last year but was however extended for another two months and will now end at the end of January.

Information at hand shows that the exercise could have been marred by corruption with allegations of creation of ghost workers arising.

Sources close to the developments told this paper that each mobile registration team was supposed to consist of eight members as of December, down from 10 who served for three months.

According to sources, the Midlands province has teams consisting of less people than the required eight.

“The scandal is that in the Midlands, there are less than eight people serving in the teams. Some teams have four people and yet allowances are paid for eight people. The question is: where are the rest of the funds going?”

Officials at the RG’s office told the Zimbabwe Independent that a probe team has been dispatched to investigate the matter.

The sources said it is highly suspected that those in charge of the recruitment process in the provinces are creating ghost workers so that they benefit from the payouts.

Another source who watched the mobile registration process closely said the workers are supposed to be paid US$30 per day.

Sources said workers on the ground bemoaned the lack of adequate resources for the workers.

“The exercise is extremely underfunded, the workers have no cars and yet there should be station vehicles in cases of emergency, for instances when one falls sick. There is also lack of stationery and other equipment. As a result, there has been a backlog,” the source said.

The source said workers are ferried by truck from one station to another.

“As I mentioned that there are shortages of cars, the workers are ferried by a truck which drops them at a certain station, for instance a school, where they then spend a week carrying out the mobile registration exercise.”

Midlands provincial registrar Agnes Gambura said she has not heard of any complaints to do with the mobile registration exercise and asked the reporter to put the questions in writing.

Sources told this paper that a report was made last week on Monday to the Civil Service Commission conditions service general manager Kudzai Dhliwayo who said the matter would be treated as a matter of urgency and investigated the following day.

Dhliwayo had not yet responded to questions e-mailed to him. Mudede had also not responded to questions sent to him by the time of going to print.

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