via Kasukuwere brother blasts gvt loan claims NewZimbabwe 22/03/2014 by Nkosana Dlamini
ZANU PF youth leader and businessman, Tongai Kasukuvere, has vehemently denied claims he abused his relationship with cabinet minister, Saviour Kasukuwere, to access cash from a youth development fund administered by the latter when he headed the indigenisation ministry.
The claims were made by Infrastructure Development Bank of Zimbabwe (IDBZ) CEO, Charles Chikaura, when he appeared before the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Youth, Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment last Thursday.
Chikaura cited Kasukuvere (who insists the surname is spelt with a ‘v’ and not the ‘w’ used by his brother) and Cecilia Chivhunga, Zanu PF deputy youth league secretary for Information, as part of the 70 percent, largely ruling party beneficiaries, who have defaulted on repaying the $5,000 loans.
But Kasukuvere, a “successful” Bindura commercial farmer, came out guns blazing on Saturday, insisting he was an enterprising businessman in his own right and would not rely on his brother to short-circuit his business deals.
“First of all l am Tongai Kasukuvere. Ndiri munhu akazvimiririra, with two kids.Handidye kumba kwaKasukuwere. That’s what you must understand,” he said.
“Handigare kumba kwake, ndogara kumba kwangu. Ndinekapurazi kangu. I have my own things that l do, he (the minister) has got his own things. We carry the same surname, that’s as far as it goes.
“Ini ndinechigaro changu muZanu PF, ndinomirirawo musangano in my own capacity ndichiita zvakawanda zvisiri zvema $5,000 … What is so special about $5 000?
“Ukauya kupurazi kwangu Comrade, you will see kuti uyu haasi farmer we fake.Ndinorima!”
“If that was the case, l would have sourced for something far more than $5,000 … l would have asked for $200,000 because that is an amount that would meet the requirements on my farm.
“These monies were easily accessible by most youths who even did not have the same collateral security with me. Why would l need my brother to get such money?
“In fact, l am a national leader in the youth league and like any Zimbabwean, l am entitled to go and ask for a loan, whether it’s a thousand or a million.”
The Zanu PF youth league national deputy secretary for external relations admitted he had indeed accessed the loan but through his shelf company, Rashfin Investments, on which he added three co-directors to complete the loan requirements.
He said he was doing this to assist the three youths who had nowhere to start but things did not go well when the project they had invested the loan in did not succeed after the crop they had planted was affected by frost.
He insists the burden of repaying the loan was a collective responsibility and the bank must cite the company instead of cherry-picking a “juicy” name among thousands of defaulters.
Kasukuvere said he has not yet been called by the bank to enquire over the debt, adding he found it unethical of the bank managers to take his name to Parliament before doing what he said was a basic operational requirement.
If there had a genuine case against him, he said, the bank would even have instituted remedies of visiting his farm to deliver letters of demand or confiscated cash from his account with the same bank.
He also denied claims he had benefitted from a fund reserved for the under 35s, the highest age in the Zanu PF definition of a youth.
“I am 34 years of age and a youth is someone who is between 15 and 35 and if this happened last year or two years back, I was 33.
“Just because ndinedumbu does not make me mdhara, kudya sadza. Ndirimuyouth akakwana,” he said with a chuckle, pulling off his national ID which showed he was born on Christmas Day, 1979.