Former Zanu-PF politician and independent legislator for Norton, Temba Mliswa, has challenged the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra) to carry out meaningful lifestyle audits instead of playing to the gallery. Mliswa said that the organisation should start from the top when carrying out audits and not at the bottom. Speaking at a meeting on the externalisation list released by President Emmerson Mnangagwa, Mliswa said,
It seems to be targeted and so forth. You know the ministers are there and it seems like you cannot get there. Go for the minister and let the president exonerate him with the powers that he has. What stops you from that?
Why are you starting from the bottom and not the top? Go for the President (Mnangagwa), go to him to account (he has never said no), the Vice-President, and Cabinet ministers that are there, but we are very selective in lifestyle audits. It becomes a talk show at the end of the day and taxpayers’ money is wasted.
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Speaking to NewsDay after the event, Zimra chairperson Willia Bonyongwe said,
First of all, I would like to say Zimra is not in anti-corruption. We collect tax and when we do lifestyle audits, it is just one of the ways of collecting that tax….Most of those people who are in the limelight, we have actually visited them the only thing is when Zimra does their things, we do not go public because the law does not allow us. So, if we were to come to you, do an audit on you, we would collect money from you and do everything. Unless you go and speak to the Press, nobody would ever know.