Swindlers, be warned!

  • Simbachawene calls for laws to prosecute retired corrupt public servants and leaders.

DODOMA: THE Minister of State in the President’s Office (Public Service Management and Good Governance), George Simbachawene, has suggested the need to review legislation in order to hold accountable public servants and top leaders who engaged in corruption during their time in office, even after retirement.

Mr Simbachawene made the call on Monday during the opening of the Annual General Meeting of leaders of the Prevention and Combating of Corruption Bureau (PCCB) held in Dodoma, the capital of the country.

The minister emphasised the importance of granting more discretionary powers to the anti-graft czar to prosecute retired public servants and leaders, in order to serve as a lesson to those currently in public office.

“We have witnessed cases where roads are constructed at high costs, but surprisingly become impassable within two or three years. Is there any problem with holding accountable those responsible for their construction, even after they have retired?” he questioned.

Mr Simbachawene suggested that the anti-corruption watchdog should have the power to revisit projects tainted by corruption and prosecute anyone involved in the illicit activities.

He also noted that petty corruption in the country still persists and urged the PCCB to tighten its grip and close all loopholes for any form of graft. He added that there were still complaints from the public regarding corruption in various public entities, hindering the provision of important services to the people.

Speaking at the event, PCCB Director General Salum Hamduni reported that during the last financial year, the anti-corruption body saved 171.9 billion Tanzanian shillings that would have been squandered by unscrupulous officials.

“Furthermore, among the achievements we accomplished during the past financial year is the prosecution of several corruption cases. So far, 60 per cent of the reported cases have been taken to court,” he stated.

Dodoma Regional Commissioner, Rosemary Senyamule, paid tribute to President Samia Suluhu Hassan for strengthening all institutions involved in the dispensation of justice, including the PCCB.

“We thank the President for her exemplary leadership, and we have witnessed how she consistently increases the budget for these institutions so that they can efficiently carry out their duties.”

After receiving the report from the Commission, she formed to assess the performance of criminal justice institutions in the country in July of this year, President Samia admitted that immediate and comprehensive reforms were necessary to improve access to criminal justice services for the people.

The team, chaired by former Chief Justice Mohammed Chande Othman, submitted its report last year, which contains 13 recommendations that, if implemented, will enhance access to justice for Tanzanians.

The commission investigated institutions such as the Police Force, National Prosecution Services (NPS), Prevention and Combating of Corruption Bureau (PCCB), Tanzania Prisons Services, and Drug Control and Enforcement Authority (DCEA).

The commission uncovered widespread corruption that hinders the poor’s access to justice, prolonged criminal case investigations and court proceedings, misuse of the right to bail, as well as abuse of power by Regional and District Commissioners.

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