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Zimbabwe NGOs Claim Authorities Forcing Them to Pay Exorbitant Fees

Allegations of a different sort of corruption have come from non-governmental organizations who said local authorities around the country were forcing them to pay exorbitant fees before allowing them to carry out their work.

At a news conference in Harare Wednesday nine NGOs including the Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition, the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights and the National Constitutional Assembly said they were being forced to pay between $100.00 and a thousand dollars to maintain their operations.

Masvingo Governor Titus Maluleke recently banned 29 NGOs from operating in his province for allegedly failing to register with his office, while President Mugabe has accused the NGOs of trying to unseat him by unconstitutional means.

Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition Director Macdonald Lewanika told Jonga Kandemiiri that the NGOs consider the demands for payment to be extortionate and are encouraging their members to report this to the police and the Anti-Corruption Commission.