Central bank probes suspended directors

Source: Central bank probes suspended directors | The Herald October 26, 2018

Dr Mangudya

Golden Sibanda Senior Business Reporter
THE Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) has opened investigations into allegations of improper conduct by four of its directors implicated in illegal currency trading, Governor Dr John Mangudya has said. The probe will be conducted through RBZ’s oversight committee.

The investigations follow sensational allegations of corruption involving currency trading on parallel markets against the four directors by the short-lived chairperson of the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development’s Communications Taskforce Acie Lumumba a.k.a Gerald William Mutumanje.

The four are Messrs Mirirai Chiremba (Director Financial Intelligence), Norman Mataruka (Director Bank Supervision), Gresham Muradzikwa (Head of Security) and Azvinandawa Saburi (Director Financial Markets).

Mr Mutumanje, who had been appointed by Finance and Economic Development Minister Professor Mthuli Ncube, was fired three days into the job after questions were raised over the appropriateness of his appointment.

Dr Mangudya said in a statement yesterday that the central bank’s board of directors had tasked its oversight committee to urgently look into the issue of the suspended directors, as the bank seeks to get to the bottom of the allegations.

“The committee has been tasked to work closely in conjunction with external auditors and other stakeholders to investigate the matter. Upon conclusion of the investigations, the public will be apprised of the outcome in the interest of transparency and good governance,” Dr Mangudya said.

Mr Mutumanje alleged that the quartet was part of a cartel of well-connected dealers fuelling the black market for foreign currency, by supplying bond notes outside the authority of the bank’s topmost hierarchy. Bond notes are a form of legal tender (banknote) introduced by the RBZ in 2016 as an incentive to increase exports, the major source of foreign currency.

Zimbabwe uses a basket of foreign currencies dominated by the US dollar.

The controversy around the alleged misconduct of the RBZ directors comes amid wild swings in the exchange rate between the US dollar and other means of exchange, principally bond notes and Real Time Gross Settlement (RTGS) money, and an acute shortage of hard currency.

The galloping US dollar parallel market exchange rates against other mediums of exchange have been blamed for fuelling the recent spike in prices of basic commodities among them cooking oil, bread, sugar, laundry soap and rice.

While unscrupulous businesses have taken advantage of the situation to fleece vulnerable consumers by charging high prices and demanding payment in hard currency, Government has maintained that the US dollar and RTGS/bond notes rank at par; that is 1:1.

COMMENTS

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    Ndebele 6 years ago

    This is purely an internal Zanu Squabble about who gets paid a commission. One of the Zanu Cats was not getting a big enough cut. It is all pretty obvious like the Zanu person being charged with having sex with a cat.
    The problem is that Zanu thinks that Zimbabwe is a cat and that they can continue to f…..the cat for as long as they like?