via Recuse yourself, Kereke tells Biti | The Herald March 15, 2014 by Daniel Nemukuyu
Lawyers representing member of the National Assembly for Bikita West Dr Munyaradzi Kereke want former finance minister Tendai Biti to recuse himself from representing Dr Gideon Gono in a constitutional case filed by the legislator. Dr Kereke filed an application seeking to compel the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission to investigate and arrest Dr Gono on allegations of fraud and theft charges that he allegedly committed while still governor of the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe.
In the heads of argument filed by Dr Kereke’s lawyer, Mr James Makiya, on Thursday, it was submitted that the former minister, who runs a law firm in Harare, was a potential witness in the case.
“The second respondent’s counsel was Minister of Finance and Economic Development during part of the period to which the complaints (which are) the subject of the present inquiry allegedly arose,” read the heads of argument.
“It has been shown in the papers that he is, at the least, a potential witness. He cannot act in the matter and must be recused. Counsel will accordingly, at the hearing of this matter, object to Mr Biti’s appearance”.
Dr Kereke, a former advisor to Dr Gono, wants the courts to force the ZACC to investigate his former boss on allegations of corruption.
In the constitutional application filed in December last year, Dr Kereke cited the ZACC chairperson and Dr Gono as respondents.
He argued in the application that the commission was acting unconstitutionally by allegedly failing to probe allegations of abuse of office, corruption and theft against Dr Gono.
Dr Kereke said he wrote a letter to the commission last year outlining alleged corruption by Dr Gono between 2006 and 2009.
He attached the letter to the application.
Dr Kereke alleged that Dr Gono took more than US$37,5 million, R1,4 million and more than 21 500 pounds from State coffers and converted it to his personal use.
He alleged that Dr Gono circulated Cabinet minutes and military files to hostile foreign governments in breach of the Official Secrets Act and that he possessed proof and was ready to give evidence.
Dr Kereke said the former RBZ governor abused his authority after he allegedly borrowed in excess of US$40 million through his companies.
He wondered how Dr Gono would perform his supervisory role through the central bank after borrowing such an amount from local banks.
Another allegation made was that he sold pure gold bullion to a private jewellery company in Saudi Arabia at a discount of 34 percent.
Dr Kereke also accused Dr Gono of misrepresenting to the Government the true status of the International Monetary Fund debt by allegedly lying that the country had cleared the debt.
Dr Kereke further stated that in 2009, Dr Gono casually wrote on a scrap paper instructing a junior officer to transfer US$1,5 million into former Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s ZB account, adding that the money was never recovered by the central bank.
He alleged that Dr Gono gave US$200 000 from the Reserve Bank to the Financial Gazette in which he is the major shareholder.
Dr Kereke alleged that commissioners from the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission were given money by Dr Gono for luxurious holidays at a time the country was facing economic challenges.
The matter is yet to be set down for hearing.