HOME affairs minister Kazembe Kazembe has promised to deal with corruption in the Registrar-General’s department.

Speaking after touring the Midlands provincial registry and immigration offices on Thursday, Kazembe said officers at passport offices were demanding as much as US$20 to issue people with documentation that would have been produced already.

“Corruption kills our economy and I am warning those who could be involved that the long arm or the law will catch up with you. I am receiving a lot of complaints, a lot of allegations that some people receive messages to say your passport is ready, come and collect,” he said.

“But they say when we go to the passport offices they say the passport is not yet ready. It’s a way of asking for money and then you are told if you can give me US$20, I can facilitate for you to get the passport yet it is there already.”

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Officials at passport offices located at Makombe building in Harare have in the past been fingered as being behind the wave of corruption in which they fleece desperate citizens wishing to get travel documents.

At district and provincial offices of the RG’s department, similar complaints have also been recorded.

Kazembe said the reports could not be false.

“There is no smoke where there is no fire. People are accusing us of being corrupt and obviously there is an element of truth in that. I am kindly asking us to be responsible citizens of this country,” he said.

“I am appealing to Zimbabweans, I am appealing to our citizens, if you witness corruption please report it because if you don’t you have taken part. I know we are already doing something about it, we are investigating these alleged cases of corruption. But we are appealing to those who have the information to come forward and assist us so that we can arrest this problem.”

Kazembe was accompanied by his deputy Mike Madiro, Midlands provincial affairs minister, Larry Mavima, and officials from the Registrar General’s Offices.