Masenda pleads for Mighty Warriors

HARARE - Zimbabwe Olympic Committee (Zoc) president Admire Masenda has pleaded with the ministry of Finance to waive duty on mobile phones given to the Mighty Warriors at the 2016 Rio Olympics Games.

Speaking in his first interview after he was re-elected for a third term to lead Zoc at the weekend, Masenda said the senior women national football team were on national duty and they should have been exempted from paying duty.

The Mighty Warriors received Samsung Galaxy S7 handsets after Samsung Electronics distributed 12 500 mobiles phones to every Olympian last August but the phones were seized by the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra) upon their return.

The duty required to date is now in excess of $3 000 with the players failing to secure the funds to pay Zimra more than 10 months after the Olympic Games. “... I think it’s only fair that the ministry will say let’s waive the duty. It’s $3 000 and I’m sure the ministry can afford to waive that. I’m failing to understand that in my mind yes $3 000 is a lot for Zoc but certainly isn’t a lot for the ministry of Finance.”

Zimra board secretary and director for legal and corporate services Florence Jambwa said: “What I can confirm is that Section 38 (1) of the Customs and Excise Act (Chapter 23:02) stipulates that ‘no goods shall be imported into Zimbabwe without entry being made and without duty being paid or secured’.

“This means that all importers who bring goods into Zimbabwe shall pay the appropriate duties and taxes, except in situations where the goods do not attract duty and/or taxes; are in transit through Zimbabwe; or qualify for rebates. For instance, the traveller’s rebate is an allowance granted on goods imported by a traveller once in a calendar month and on their first entry into Zimbabwe. The duty-free allowance of $200 per person and is granted on goods imported by travellers for their personal use.”

Meanwhile, Masenda took time to thank the electorate that showed confidence in him by voting him into office for what he has described as his third and final term.

“I am humbly grateful for the confidence and honour that I have been given to be able to continue and serve Zoc. I’m grateful for the support and trust that I have been given for this final term,” Masenda said.

Swimming icon Kirsty Coventry joined the board as one of the two vice-presidents together with Thabani Gonye who also retained his post so did Cleopas Nyangoni who retained his post of treasurer.


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