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Sex-for-food at Chingwizi Camp - DailyNews Live

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Godfrey Mtimba ??? 2 April 2014 8:53AM ??? 10 comments

CHINGWIZI CAMP - Flood victims at Chingwizi holding camp have accused government workers and Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) officers in charge of distributing aid of demanding sex from females in exchange for food and other commodities.

The victims, particularly males, expressed concern about the actions of government workers, who are allegedly asking for sexual favours from their wives, children and relatives by dangling aid items sourced from well-wishers.

Chingwizi settlers who spoke to the Daily News said government workers were taking advantage of the desperate women and girls to solicit for sex in exchange for food, blankets, tents and other necessities at the camp.

Ananias Chiguni, who was relocated from Chivi, said the situation had gone out of hand.

? W e a r e v e r y a n g r y w i t h w h a t i s h appening here,? he said. ?The workers distributing food and other materials are abusing our wives and daughters by demanding that they sleep with them and give them the commodities they distribute, particularly food.

?They know that our families are facing hunger and starvation and they are taking advantage of that as our women will end up giving in to their demands to save their families from starving.??

The victims said the main culprits were ZRP members who guard the food at the warehouse.

?The police officers are the most notorious in this game, they are the main culprits behind the foodfor-sex thing as they are the ones who guard the warehouses and they have unlimited access to them,? said Aaron Murungiri. ?So they can just take whatever they want and call our women to give them goodies but they demand sex first. We are very angry with them and I wish we could beat them up but the law does not allow us.?

The use of food and other items to lure females has also been blamed by the villagers for the unprecedented rise of prostitution at the camp.

Villagers said every morning, the whole camp will be strewn with used condoms as the actors wait until it gets dark to engage in this activity.

?Prostitution has suddenly rise here as desperate settlers are now using their bodies to get what they need to survive and this is caused by those distributing things to us,? said a lady who declined to be named.

Although government said it was not aware of the reports of abuse, civil society groups assisting the flood victims confirmed receiving the reports.

Government officials said there was a complaints? committee tasked with handling such complaints.

?We have not yet received such reports here,? said Felix Chikovo, Masvingo provincial administrator and government head of the Tokwe-Mukorsi flood victims committee. ?It?s actually my first time to hear this from you. We have a complaints? committee based at the camp and they have not forwarded reports of that nature.?

T h e C o a l i t i o n A g a i n st Corruption (Cac) team condemned the soliciting.

?We are here on an investigative mission after receiving reports of corruption in the distribution of aid to victims and we have just learnt about this disturbing sex-for-food activity here,? said Cac director Terry Mutsvanga.

? C a c s t r o n g l y c o n d e m n s t h e actions by such corrupt officers and calls upon the relevant authorities to investigate the issue with speed.

?Such actions are barbaric since it is the poor, vulnerable women who are being abused.?