16. May 2022

Financial investigations training for Zimbabwean anti-corruption officers

Zimbabwe financial investigations training

Our International Centre for Asset Recovery (ICAR) training team was in the Zimbabwean capital Harare at the end of April to deliver our flagship Financial Investigations and Asset Recovery training programme.

The 23 participants in the week-long intensive workshop were mostly investigators and prosecutors from the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC), the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) and the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (ZIMRA). These four agencies are all key stakeholders in fighting corruption and money laundering in Zimbabwe.

Hon. Justice L. Matanda Moyo, Chairperson of ZACC, stated in her opening remarks that the training is part of a wider multidisciplinary approach to fighting corruption in Zimbabwe. It is the result of inter-agency cooperation in which, among other topics, the stakeholder agencies identify areas of joint training needs.

ICAR training programmes regularly bring officers from different agencies together for intensive, hands-on workshops such as this. This approach has proven to have clear benefits in promoting inter-agency relationships and cooperation.

Essential skills for complex investigations

The training provided the participants with the essential skills and simple but yet powerful tools to handle high-profile and complex financial investigations. As one participant commented:

“The course was very informative…. a lot of grey areas in money laundering have been cleared. I am looking forward to delivering excellence after this training. The course also assisted me in dissecting and understanding the relevant sections [of our laws] on money laundering.”

Simulated investigation

The participants were immersed in a simulated corruption and money-laundering investigation during which they actively followed investigative leads, made decisions and analysed and solved problems, using the Zimbabwean legal framework.

The experience also allowed them to reflect upon the challenges that such investigations entail and possible solutions to overcome them. A participant commented:

“The teaching methods were excellent, the clarifications clear and the lectures insightful. I return to my organisation better equipped and more knowledgeable.”

Ongoing collaboration with international support

The Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) sponsored the training, which took place under a case consultancy agreement signed between ZACC, NPA and ICAR. Under the agreement, ICAR provides (among other things) technical support and training in asset recovery, as well as expertise in obtaining evidence from other jurisdictions to assist domestic prosecutions.