Chinhoyi (Telegraph-New Ziana) – The Minister of Home Affairs and Cultural Heritage, Kazembe Kazembe has warned people to stop offering bribes to officers at the Register General’s Office as this was fueling corruption.
Speaking in Chinhoyi during a familiarization tour of Mashonaland West Province, he also warned officers from the Registrar General’s Office, particularly passport department, not to solicit for bribes, saying identity documents were a basic human right for citizens.
“The need to eradicate corruption cannot be over emphasized and I always say there is no smoke without fire, if we are engaging ourselves in corrupt activities it’s time to stop because we will definitely apply the law and it will definitely catch up with you, so do not be an example,” Kazembe said.
“I know things are difficult but that is not an excuse to be corrupt, am not saying we are all corrupt, there might be one or two but we all end up being painted with the same colour, with the same brush,” he said.
There have been persistent reports that officers at the Registrar General’s Office in most parts of the country demand bribes for services such as issuance of birth certificates and passports.
“Once again I appeal to Zimbabweans as I am told that sometimes the public itself offers bribes to the officials and it takes two to commit a crime. I appeal to citizens that please let’s not fuel corruption, its killing our country and our economy, and two wrongs don’t make a right,” Kazembe said.
He also appealed to staff in the Registrar General’s Office to treat customers with dignity, amid reports the officers were often rude to people seeking services.
“Even though we have challenges in terms of consumables, but when we serve our people lets serve them with a happy face and treat them with all the respect and dignity they deserve. Let’s try and clear the backlogs so that these people will not have to hustle to have their documents as we are there to see that our citizens have access to identification documents which is a human right.”