Home Exploring the role of Illicit Financial Flows (IFFs) in Zimbabwe’s Political Economy

Exploring the role of Illicit Financial Flows (IFFs) in Zimbabwe’s Political Economy

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Section 9 of the Zimbabwean constitution mandates the state to uphold  good governance by adopting, among other values, financial probity at every level within public institutions. Further to this, meritocracy must inform all appointments to public office and measures must be taken to expose, combat and eradicate all forms of corruption and abuse of power by those holding political and public offices.

Contrary to this, financial probity remains one of the country’s  biggest challenges. According to a 2013  African Development Bank report, Zimbabwe had lost a cumulative US$12 billion in the last three decades through Illicit Financial Flows(IFFs), ranging from opaque financial deals to tax avoidance and illegal commercial activities. Maverick Citizen’s Report on Cartel Power Dynamics in Zimbabwe exposes the intricate details of the roots, networks and cost of IFFs, including their role in entrenching their patrons’ hold on power; eroding democratisation; undermining service delivery; and creating an uncompetitive business climate.

A recently released report by Africa Risk Consulting notes with concern that Zimbabwe is ‘…becoming a regional hub for laundering illicit wealth that is fuelling violent conflict.’ Other studies still have illustrated the negative environmental impact cartels and IFFs have had in Zimbabwe, their contribution to human rights violations, and how they have helped enable a political elite to maintain power through a system of patronage to the detriment of constitutionalism and the rule of law.


About this webinar

This webinar forms part of a series of open and closed-door discussions unpacking various dimensions of the political and economic crisis facing Zimbabwe with the objective of providing tangible policy recommendations. This event will draw on experts within the field of illicit financial flows and transnational crime to uncover the role of IFFs within Zimbabwe’s political economy and what steps can be taken at the national and regional level to curb IFFs and their corrosive effect on Zimbabwe’s democracy. 

About Good Governance Africa

Good Governance Africa is a research and advocacy non-profit organisation with centres in South Africa, Zimbabwe, Ghana, Nigeria, and Ethiopia.

GGA’s aim is to improve governance performance across the continent; to inform and persuade the policy community that transparency and accountability are the basic building blocks of successful development; to strengthen the rule of law; and to build an active citizenry that institutionalises constraints on executive power. Why? Because improved governance results in better economic, social, and environmental performance, which leads to greater wellbeing for all citizens.

GGA conducts high-quality research and initiates critical discussions on a variety of thematic areas and partners with African governments and other non-government organisations to complement the building of more inclusive political settlements across the continent.