CHOMBO, CHIHURI, MPOFU SUMMONED TO PARLY OVER ILLICIT DIAMOND DEALINGS
Home Affairs minister Obert Mpofu, former Finance minister Ignatius Chombo and ex-police boss Augustine Chihuri have been summoned to appear before the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Mines and Energy to give their side into the alleged looting of diamonds in the Chiadzwa area.
Committee chairperson and Norton MP Temba Mliswa told NewsDay yesterday that the net had been cast wider to find answers into the alleged illicit diamond deals.
“We want everyone who might help us get answers to be there, so we have summoned quite a few people. Chihuri, former Home Affairs, Finance and Local Government minister Ignatius Chombo and former Mines, now Home Affairs minister Obert Mpofu, Walter Chidakwa (former Mines minister) all current and former permanent secretaries.
All top police officers at the Border Control Unit will be appearing before the committee on Friday,” Mliswa said.
He said his committee wanted to plug all “loopholes and stop the blame-game”.
“Chihuri has to come and explain because it seems as Parliament, we are being pushed from pillar to post. We want all of these people in one room so they can explain their individual roles. Everyone, who was involved, needs to come and we are hoping they will,” the Norton MP said.
Mpofu, in particular, was implicated in a $10 million bribery scandal by Canadile Mining owner Lovemore Kurotwi during his tenure as Mines minister.
He has consistently denied the charges.
Last week, Mliswa’s committee summoned current Police Commissioner-General Godwin Matanga, who professed ignorance regarding the operations of a police-controlled diamond mining firm Gye Nyame in Chiadzwa.
Matanga and Chombo were quizzed on their role in Operation Hakudzokwi, in which illegal diamond miners were killed at the hands of State security agents and to explain police’s diamond mining activities.
Mpofu, a few weeks ago, appeared before the same committee and declared he would not answer questions “as long as Mliswa is chairperson”.
Mliswa threatened to charge the Home Affairs minister with contempt of Parliament, but is yet to take action.