The International Board of Amnesty International has taken the unprecedented step of suspending Amnesty International Zimbabwe (AIZ) from the global movement and placing it under administration following evidence of fraud and serious financial misconduct.
According to Robert Shivambu, Amnesty International Media Manager for Southern Africa, an extensive forensic audit was conducted in late 2018 which uncovered evidence of fraud and serious financial mismanagement by individuals in AIZ.
“National law enforcement agencies were notified of the findings earlier this year and the organisation also commenced the legal process of civil recovery in order to recoup lost funds. Amnesty International’s International Board can give an assurance that, since the allegations first came to light, urgent financial risk management measures have been put in place to ensure anti-fraud and corruption procedures have been adhered to and that donor funds are safe.
“However, the decision has been made to take extraordinary measures on AIZ to protect the reputation, integrity and operation of the movement. It is with regret that it is now clear that AIZ has not been able to take the necessary steps in its duty of good governance. Amnesty International is committed to working hand in glove with the appropriate authorities and is providing full assistance to all current investigations to ensure that any individual found to have been involved in misconduct is held to account. We are unable to comment or provide further details until all investigations have been completed,” Shivambu said in a statement.