Kurotwi charges puzzling: Ex-ZMDC boss

HARARE - Former Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation (ZMDC) acting chairperson, Gloria Mawarire, says she is puzzled as to the reason behind Core Mining director Lovemore Kurotwi’s criminal charges.

Kurotwi is facing fraud charges involving $2 billion and is jointly charged with ex-ZMDC manager, Dominic Mubaiwa.

Charges against Kurotwi and Mubaiwa arose after a failed investment by South African diamond firm-Benn Steinmeitz Group Resources (BSGR) into the diamond mining in Marange fields.

Kurotwi is accused of misrepresenting to the ministry of Mines and ZMDC that Core Mining was a special purpose vehicle of BSGR, which was supposed to be the guarantor in a Joint Venture Agreement between Core-Mining and ZMDC.

The court heard they later travelled to South Africa after Mubaiwa allegedly prepared an unapproved and uncirculated Memorandum of Agreement between Marange Resources (Pty) Ltd signed on July 24, 2009 before acquiring Cabinet authority to conduct a due diligence exercise on Core Mining.

However, Mawarire who once faced the same charges, told the court that she was surprised as to the reason the two were facing criminal charges.

She said their trip to South Africa was not a due diligence exercise but a familiarisation tour, in which they wanted to see the preparedness of the investors for the Marange project.

During cross examination by Kurotwi’s lawyer, Beatrice Mtetwa, Mawarire yesterday said Kurotwi and Mubaiwa had not acted in any wrongful manner.

“I am just as puzzled as I was when I got arrested,” said Mawarire.

She said during the time that her board came into office; the investors who were to partner with ZMDC had already been identified.

“We were dealing with investors that had already been agreed upon,” said Mawarire. - Tendai Kamhungira

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