ON Monday, Pedstock appeared before a parliamentary portfolio committee and the scale of financial impropriety that was revealed on that day is simply shocking.
Source: Mines ministry dubious payment calls for probe – NewsDay Zimbabwe November 17, 2016
Comment: NewsDay Editor
Among other issues, Pedstock boss, Dror Jackson revealed that he was a conduit to sending more than $1 million to an Israeli company with no offices in Zimbabwe, authorised by Mines ministry permanent secretary, Francis Gudyanga on behalf of the Minerals Marketing Corporation of Zimbabwe (MMCZ).
Also, Pedstock, an agricultural concern, made a payment to the police’s minerals control unit in unclear circumstances.
There are several other murky issues that are raised, but it is the payment of money to Glamel – the Israeli company – and Gudyanga’s involvement that should be cause for concern.
Jackson claimed the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) had approved the money he paid to Glamel, but would not reveal what service the company offered and what connection it had with MMCZ.
Central bank governor, John Mangudya has shouted his voice hoarse, decrying externalisation of money and Zimbabweans are owed an explanation why so much money was allowed to leave the country for a payment no one seems to know or is willing to talk about.
Mangudya cannot burden the country talking about externalisation, when questionable deals are being approved at the central bank.
If this deal was not questionable, then there would have been no need for MMCZ to go via Pedstock to make a payment to Glamel, as they would have simply done it themselves without a middleman.
Gudyanga owes the country an explanation and if not, then he should be explaining it to law enforcement agents.
How Gudyanga is not under probe from the police and the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (Zacc) at this very moment is anyone’s guess and it points to a country not serious about combating corruption.
This is not the first time Gudyanga is in the news for suspected dodgy dealings, yet Zacc and the police seem unmoved to investigate him.
There are questions on how he is running a one-man board at MMCZ and the legalities of the formation of the Zimbabwe Consolidated Diamond Company.
It is alleged he is a board member of a Dubai-based diamond buying company – pointing to obvious conflict of interest and if this is not enough to warrant an investigation, then nothing is.
A few weeks back, the nation excitedly thought Zacc had finally found its teeth when it swooped on Higher Education minister Jonathan Moyo and his deputy, Godfrey Gandawa, but they claimed political and factional persecution, which was laughed off by most people.
But the longer Gudyanga stays without being investigated, the more Moyo and anyone accused of corruption feels vindicated that Zacc is being used for political ends rather than investigating actual corruption.