Disclose full list of RBZ debtors: MDC

HARARE - Morgan Tsvangirai’s MDC is demanding a full list of the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ)’s debtors before government assumes the $1,3 billion debt run up by the central bank.

The MDC has also asked the Law Society of Zimbabwe to probe the refusal by Finance minister Patrick Chinamasa — a lawyer by profession — to name top Zanu PF officials accused of looting the central bank.

The opposition party has been demanding information on beneficiaries of the government input scheme who are yet to repay loans, but because it lacks parliamentary majority, its demands have been spurned.

The RBZ Debt Assumption Bill was railroaded and fast tracked through the National Assembly last week, and it is now just a matter of formality that the Bill will sail through Senate.

The Bill proposes that government assumes the central bank’s $1,3 billion debt — owed to banks, the private sector and non-governmental organisations — to remove the burden on the central bank and allow it to resort to its lender of last resort function.

In terms of the Bill, the State would assume debts incurred by the RBZ before December 31, 2008.

It is widely suspected that top ruling party officials, who include ministers, legislators and top military commanders, received farming equipment, which they did not pay for, while loans have also not been repaid.

The MDC said effectively, the poverty-stricken majority of the people of Zimbabwe are now saddled with a debt of $1,3 million from which they never benefitted.

Chinamasa has flatly refused to name the defaulting Zanu PF members, meekly saying “let bygones be bygones”.

Giving oral evidence before the parliamentary committee on budget and finance management in February, Chinamasa insisted that Parliament allows the government to take over the RBZ’s $1,3 billion debt, instead of forcing defaulters to pay.

The MDC is demanding a comprehensive list of beneficiaries, a move that places the country’s Treasury in a fix.

The RBZ’s quasi fiscal activities under former governor, Gideon Gono, saw the bank’s debts spiralling into billions.

The MDC said it was “deeply concerned” about the general lack of transparency and accountability in the management of public funds and public resources in Zimbabwe.

“Finance minister Patrick Chinamasa is a senior lawyer of more than 35 years experience,” said Obert Gutu, the MDC spokesperson.

“As a legal practitioner, he is professionally bound by the ethics that guide the conduct of all officers of the court.

“Put simply, he is obliged to conduct himself honourably and professionally at all relevant times.

“Much as we appreciate that he is a leading member of the collapsing, bankrupt and faction-ridden Zanu PF regime, he is still obliged to tell the nation the truth and nothing else but the truth at all times.

“His deliberate and stubborn refusal to disclose the full particulars of all those persons who appear on the list of the RBZ debtors is an extremely deplorable act.”

Gutu said for a lawyer of his stature, the refusal by Chinamasa to disclose the debtors was “tantamount to an act of serious professional misconduct.”

“For this very reason, the Law Society of Zimbabwe is called upon to take it upon itself to launch an investigation in order to establish the full reasons why a very senior lawyer in the mould of Chinamasa would chose to conduct himself in such a dishonourable and unprofessional manner,” Gutu said.

“After all, lawyers are supposed to be people who always conduct themselves honourably.

“There is a very strong suspicion that the minister of Finance himself is on the list of the RBZ debtors. Should this be the case, the matter becomes even more serious and naturally, it would call for his immediate resignation from public office.”

Within the next few weeks, the suffering masses of Zimbabwe will also be further burdened with an additional debt in the sum of $66 million arising from the perennially loss-making and technically insolvent Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (Private) Limited and the Air Zimbabwe (Private) Limited’s debt in the sum of $282 million will also be taken over by the taxpayers.


Comments (4)

eisssh bazukulu and some village idiot is busy celebrating that regime is delivering!!!

UNCLE REAL - 21 May 2015

This loans were processed by some people who did not even support the system .Therefore MDC guys make your own investigations these people will stand to pay when the rightfull time comes. Just keep records "Akaba achadzorera kana tiri tose vakoma." Andy Brown.

felix - 22 May 2015

The beneficiaries are so obvious. Zvimwe hazvibvunzwe. All we want to know is who owes what and what we're the terms of the loans. Corruption in this government is something not to be ashamed of. These people have gone beyond the point of feeling guilty

Bull Ant - 23 May 2015

mary maradadi terera is one of the people who benefited , she is related to james maridadi . she got a farm in goromonzi district in 2008 and she was given 2000 litres of fuel yavaitengesa na james maridadi . this mdc people should stop make noice about this debt ivo vachiziva kuti hama dzavo dzaka benefiter

bigman - 26 May 2015

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