Drama in Parly over Kasukuwere debate

THERE was drama in the National Assembly yesterday when Deputy Speaker Mabel Chinomona allegedly tried to block debate on a report by the Youth Portfolio Committee, which implicated Zanu PF political commissar Saviour Kasukuwere as having deceived President Robert Mugabe that $50 million had been pledged for the Zimunya Marange Community Share Ownership Trust (CSOT).

Source: Drama in Parly over Kasukuwere debate – NewsDay Zimbabwe October 26, 2016


The report ordered Kasukuwere’s conduct be investigated for possible criminal abuse of office.

It said Kasukuwere misled Mugabe, who presented a dummy $1,5m cheque to the Zimunya Marange CSOT, putting his name into disrepute.

“With the findings of this inquiry revealing clear deception bordering on criminal abuse of office, the committee calls upon the Zimbabwe Republic Police, the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission, the Auditor-General and all relevant authorities to institute formal proceedings within 14 days (from the day of adoption of this report) to investigate the conduct of Kasukuwere, officials from the Ministry of Youth, National Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment Board as well as the diamond mining companies in relation to the Marange Zimunya CSOT,” committee chairperson, Justice Mayor Wadyajena said.

The committee recommended Mugabe must establish a commission of inquiry led by a judge to investigate the alleged web of deceit, corruption and fraud related to establishment of the CSOT.

Former Presidential Affairs minister Didymus Mutasa was accused of interfering and blocking the Marange Zimunya CSOTs from getting their $50m pledges from Anjin, Diamond Mining Company, Rera, Mbada and Marange Resources.

Chiefs in Marange had told the committee that there was political interference and suspected certain officials were given cash and vehicles meant for the trust.

Videos of the launch of the CSOT, in which Kasukuwere claimed $50m had been pledged, and audio tapes of Chiadzwa villagers fuming that Mugabe misled them, were played in the House.

“Kasukuwere informed the committee that he was not responsible for the dummy cheque ($1,5m) that was displayed at the launch of the CSOT. He explained he did not work for BancABC and that he did not draw up the dummy cheque,” the report said.

Former Mines minister Obert Mpofu and ex-Youth minister Francis Nhema and his permanent secretary George Magosvongwe told the committee there was no written evidence of the $50m pledges.

Out of the $1,5m dummy cheque, only $400 000 was paid to the CSOT.

Recommendations by the committee included compensation of displaced villagers and that police investigate externalisation of $500m by Jinan and that the new merged diamond firm, Zimbabwe Consolidated Diamond Company work out a payment plan to avail the $50m to the CSOT.

Earlier before the report was read, Chinomona skipped reading Order Number 4, to announce debate on the Marange Zimunya CSOT report by Wadyajena.

Instead, she read that Order Number 5 be discussed, angering MPs from both sides of the House.

Chinomona claimed there were some corrections that needed to be done, but the legislators would have none of that.
Magwegwe MP, Anele Ndebele (MDC-T) said Chinomona was in contempt of Parliament procedure.

Buhera South legislator, Joseph Chinotimba (Zanu PF) added: “We did not go to war in order for one person to eat while others are suffering. If anybody stole, they must be mentioned and exposed, and even yesterday, the army castigated corruption.”

After almost 15 minutes of deliberations, Chinomona allowed Wadyajena to discuss the motion, but MPs still had no kind words for her, suspecting a cover-up.Binga North MP, Prince Sibanda (MDC-T) said both Chinomona and the Clerk of Parliament, Kennedy Chokuda, should be investigated.