$10m diamond ‘bribe’ haunts Obert Mpofu

Source: $10m diamond ‘bribe’ haunts Obert Mpofu | Newsday (News)

HARARE businessman Lovemore Kurotwi has engaged President Emmerson Mnangagwa in a bid to recover $17 million seized by the State when he was hounded out of the Chiadzwa diamond fields allegedly at the behest of former Mines minister Obert Mpofu.

by XOLISANI NCUBE

In a letter to Mnangagwa dated January 4, Kurotwi reiterated his claims that due to his refusal to give Mpofu a $10 million bribe, he was forced out of diamond mining fields in Chiadzwa and lost $3,6 million cash, 1,4 million carats of diamonds and mining equipment worth $14 million which he had invested through his company— Canadile Miners.

“We were given this concession in partnership with Marange Resources, a government mining company under the auspices of ZMDC (Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation). In fact, ZMDC guaranteed the partnership,” read part of the letter seen by NewsDay.

“However, as is on record, former Minister of Mines Obert Mpofu asked me for a bribe of $10 million. Upon my refusal to give him this bribe, minister Mpofu caused my arrest on unfounded allegations of fraud. Again as is now public knowledge, I was acquitted by the courts of law for these trumped-up charges.”

In his letter, the businessman accused Mpofu of having “illegally confiscated the assets mentioned above, namely, $3,6 million cash which was in MMCZ’s (Minerals Marketing Corporation of Zimbabwe) account, 1,4 million carats of diamonds which were in our vaults in Mutare and our mining equipment worth $14 million which was initially used to mine diamonds by Marange Resources and is now being used by ZCDC (Zimbabwe Consolidated Diamond Company) to mine diamonds in Chiadzwa.”

Mpofu, who was not answering his phone yesterday, has persistently denied allegations that he demanded a $10 million bribe from Kurotwi, while accusing the businessman of being poor to even afford a bottle of water.

But Kurotwi said he had evidence to back up his claims and pleaded with Mnangagwa to help him facilitate “restitution of our assets as stated”. After his acquittal in 2016, Kurotwi engaged former President Robert Mugabe with a view to recover his assets, but there was no joy for him and he now hopes the new administration will assist.

COMMENTS

WORDPRESS: 2
  • comment-avatar
    Ndonga 3 years ago

    When thieves posing as business executives fall out, people who have to work for their bread can sit back and enjoy the show.

    Let these two “big shots” keep on squabbling like street women, while we enjoy the show.

    Lovemore there will have to be a lot of serious bootlicking done before you get your stolen diamonds back. Well actually they were stolen twice, firstly by you and then by Diamonds Mpofu.

  • comment-avatar
    harper 3 years ago

    You can sit back and enjoy the show but the wealth they are fighting over is yours.