PEDSTOCK general manager Dror Jackson yesterday struggled to explain before Parliament how his company ended up externalising millions of dollars purportedly making payments to the police’s Minerals and Border Patrol Unit in a scam involving Mines ministry secretary Francis Gudyanga.
Source: Gudyanga illicit deals exposed – NewsDay Zimbabwe November 15, 2016
BY VENERANDA LANGA
Pedstock produces irrigation equipment and fertilisers.
Pedstock is a subsidiary of Nikuv International Projects Limited that hogged the limelight on allegations of electronically manipulating the 2013 election outcome believed to have been rigged in favour of President Robert Mugabe’s Zanu PF.
Jackson, an Israeli businessman operating in Zimbabwe, appeared before the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Mines and Energy where he was grilled on how he was used as a conduit to get a payment of more than $1 million from the Minerals Marketing Corporation of Zimbabwe (MMCZ) by Gudyanga in order to pay another Israeli company called Glamer, which has no offices in Zimbabwe.
Asked by Mines and Energy committee chairperson Daniel Shumba to explain what services Pedstock were paid for by MMCZ, Jackson denied ever dealing with the Mines ministry or MMCZ, but that his company was being used as a conduit for a confidential transaction between Glamer and the ministry.
“We (Pedstock) were just requested by the Mines ministry to receive the transfer from MMCZ, and, as Pedstock, we only did the commercial transfer for a fee of 3% and it was all done with the approval of the RBZ (Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe) and was above board,” Jackson said.
He said Pedstock received over $1 million on behalf of Glamer, with the first amount from MMCZ being $400 000, which he paid to Glamer in batches.
The committee said they smelt a rat and that Pedstock was being used by Gudyanga for illicit financial flows to Glamer, questioning the payments to the police Minerals Unit from the firm that dealt in farming equipment.
At first, Jackson claimed he did not know anyone from the Mines ministry, but later revealed that his company installed irrigation equipment at Gudyanga’s farm worth millions, which coincided with the transfer to Pedstock.
Shumba then ordered Jackson to appear again before the committee on November 28 together with Glamer from Israel and bring copies of the transactions, detailing what they were for, who signed for them, invoices that Pedstock got from the MMCZ, the RBZ exchange control approvals, details of the transfers made, as well as details of the irrigation equipment contract with Gudyanga.