AT LEAST 15 civil society organisations are under investigation by the US government through its major donor fund distribution channel USAID over corruption and misappropriation of millions of dollars.
The organisations which have joined the Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition in the graft investigations include the Zimbabwe Human Rights Association, (ZimRights), Youth in Democracy Initiative of Zimbabwe, Combined Harare Residents Association, among several others which were dealing with elections and peace building initiatives in the country.
Sources close to the investigations also said a senior official with USAID Zimbabwe office who was responsible for receiving and processing funding proposals from local NGOs had been summoned to Washington DC for questioning.
The official is also accused of authorizing and disbursing hundreds of thousands of dollars from the donor to a local residents’ pressure group employing his wife.
During the just ended festive season USAID sent an official from the US to investigate corruption in the civil society’s umbrella body, Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition, after it had emerged that its 16 member staff complement had a monthly salary bill of over $31, 000.