Campaign against Police Corruption

Campaign Focal PointMunyaradzi Bidi
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Description of the Issue
In Zimbabwe, there is a growing trend of attested  members of the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) being involved in corruption scandals. The status quo leaves anti-corruption organizations like ACT-SA, asking “Who will then guard the guards when the guards steal what they will be guarding?
There are countless cases in which police officers at all levels have been implicated in corruption and other criminal activities:

When police officers are implicated in corruption scandals and sometimes caught ‘red-handed’, the management of the police simply transfer them from one police station to another where they will continue engaging in corruption.
ACT-SA also noted that asking one police officer to investigate another has not been effective in Zimbabwe, leaving the organisation with no option but to lobby for an Independent Police Investigative Directorate similar to the  South African one
What is the proposed solution?
1- Stricter Sanctions for Wrong DoingThe management of the police has been lenient when police details commit corruption offences. One of the approaches which ACT-SA uses is simply transferring them from one police station to the other where they will continue doing the same. ACT-SA recommends more stricter sanctions, including jailing all those found guilty and dismissing them from work.
2- Setting an Independent Police Investigative DirectorateBased on several cases submitted to the management of the police, ACT-SA learnt that one police officer may not be able to investigate another officer in certain situations due to potential conflicts of interest, biases, or concerns about impartiality. To ensure transparency and integrity in the investigation process, independent oversight or external agencies should investigate allegations of misconduct involving police officers.
3- The management of the police should pronounce itself on certain behaviors that appear to have been accepted by the management because of their widespread natureIn several cases involving traffic police, they take bribes in full view of everyone. This continues to happen with impunity. The same applies to police officers responsible for livestock clearances. They demand bribes to grant these clearances. This practice is widespread and takes place country-wide and sometimes with the full knowledge of the management of the police. 
Why are the above solutions important?Stricter sanctions deter corruption and wrong-doing by the police. Overall, the existence of an Independent Police Investigative Directorate is essential for promoting accountability, upholding the rule of law, and safeguarding the rights of individuals in their interactions with law enforcement authorities.
What has ACT-SA done?

ACT-SA engaged in evidence-based advocacy that started with the gathering of evidence of corruption by the police and the following are some of the interventions carried out by ACT-SA. It has produced the following publications to facilitate the advocacy against police corruption.

The Setting up and Management of Corruption Trappings in Zimbabwe: Where are we going wrong?Download

Responses in support and against the campaign

Police, veterinary services fingered in graft
Police urged to reign on corrupt officersA corruption watchdog has found that the Zimbabwe traffic police are the most corrupt department in southern Africa, to which a cabinet minister reacted by saying it was up to citizens to refuse to pay bribes
By Silas Nkala | Sep. 26, 202328 Nov 2023 at 14:09hrs28 November 2012 15:06 GMT
THE Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa (ACT-SA) has petitioned the police and the Veterinary Services Department in Kwekwe accusing their officials of demanding bribes for livestock clearance and in securing livestock movement permits. Read More The Anti-Corruption Trust of Southern Africa (ACT-SA) has said it is disturbed by increasing cases of retribution against whistleblowers and complainants who are exposing cases of corruption by police officers in the employ of the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP).
In a statement dated November 24, Act SA director Obert Chinhamo said the onslaught against a Zhombe-based corruption whistleblower/reporting person by Kwekwe ZRP Traffic Section is more disturbing and demonstrates the form of punishment that whistleblowers and complainants face when they expose police corruption. Read More 
BULAWAYO, Zimbabwe (TrustLaw) – Corruption in the police force has become a major talking point in Zimbabwe since a new report found that its traffic section is the most corrupt in the region and is costing the government millions of dollars in lost revenue. Finance Minister Tendai Biti told parliament in July that the government was losing at least US $1 million a year in revenue as bribes find their way into police officers’ pockets instead of traffic fines being paid into state coffers. Read More