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Zimbabwe’s anti-corruption courts

Progress and challenges

After the ouster of President Mugabe in 2017, Zimbabwe established new, specialised anti-corruption courts that have since expanded to all ten provinces. Specially assigned judges and regional magistrates hear corruption cases, although not exclusively and not following any special procedures. The courts seem to be making progress on cases brought before them, but their success ultimately will depend on their expertise, capacity, and independence to pursue cases impartially.

16 June 2021
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Zimbabwe’s anti-corruption courts

Main points

  • Specialised anti-corruption courts were created as a division of the High Court in Harare and Bulawayo in 2018 to speed up the hearing of corruption cases. As of December 2020, anti-corruption courts have been established in all ten of the country’s provinces, mostly at magistrate level.
  • There are no special procedures for the anti-corruption courts or for the appointment of their judicial officers. When not presiding over corruption cases, these officers hear other matters of a civil or criminal nature.
  • During 2020 the anti-corruption courts at High Court and Magistrates Court levels had clearance rates of 79% and 89% respectively, despite delays due to constitutional complaints filed by defendants.
  • Early challenges concern perceptions of political interference, delays in concluding cases involving prominent persons, and the quality of investigations and prosecution of corruption cases.
  • There is a need to build the capacity and expertise of investigators, prosecutors, and judicial officers; strengthen coordination between state anti-corruption agencies; and adopt whistle-blower and witness protection legislation and frameworks.

Cite this publication

Mundopa, M.; (2021) Zimbabwe’s anti-corruption courts. Bergen: U4 Anti-Corruption Resource Centre, Chr. Michelsen Institute (U4 Brief 2021:3)

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About the author

Muchaneta Mundopa

Muchaneta Mundopa is a democracy and governance practitioner with particular interest in transparency and anti-corruption, access to justice, gender, civil society, and public sector reform. A legal practitioner by training, she currently serves as the Executive Director of Transparency International – Zimbabwe.


All views in this text are the author(s)’, and may differ from the U4 partner agencies’ policies.

This work is licenced under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International licence (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0)