The resignation of Robert Mugabe after 37 years in power in Zimbabwe made headlines around the world this week. A polarizing figure, Mugabe was often accused of corruption – allegations that he repeatedly dismissed – and of devastating his country’s economy.
His fall from power had an immediate positive effect on the mood of the country as people took to the streets to celebrate. But it’s crucial what happens next. A new president has been sworn in today and has vowed to tackle corruption in Zimbabwe.
Many people are now hoping for free and fair elections in 2018 and an end to endemic bribery. Our last survey of public opinion in Zimbabwe was in 2015 and we found that 60 per cent of people who used a public hospital and 44 per cent of those using public schools were asked for a bribe.
Another important decision coming early next year will be the verdict in the case of Antoine Deltour, a whistleblower in the LuxLeaks case who was convicted of revealing information about sweetheart tax deals in Luxembourg. A ruling in his favour would mean recognising that whistleblowers are not thieves but act in the public interest. This is what we believe.
News from Transparency International
Political corruption leaves families landless
This is the story of how political corruption in Zimbabwe left an 82-year-old grandmother landless and destitute, and how she and fellow cooperative members are fighting back through a legal action to be heard at the High Court early next year.
The Palestinian authority should amend laws to protect free speech
We are deeply concerned about the latest escalation in attacks on media freedom and free speech in Palestine and are calling for the Palestinian Authority (PA) to amend the Electronic Crimes Law and suspend the new requirement for journalists to have security certificates to work.