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Army's diamond mining activities under spotlight

by Staff reporter
19 Apr 2018 at 07:13hrs | Views
Defence secretary Martin Rushwaya is today expected to appear in Parliament for grilling over the army's mining activities in the Chiadzwa diamond fields.

Rushwaya was initially scheduled to appear before Parliament's Mines Portfolio Committee last week where several secretaries, among them Home Affairs' Melusi Matshiya, Mines' Munesuishe Munodawafa and the former Central Intelligence Organisation boss Happyton Bonyongwe, were interrogated over the missing $15 billion diamond revenue.

Oral evidence gathered so far by the committee shows that the Zimbabwe National Army had shares in Anjin before consolidation of diamond mines, and they did not contribute to the fiscus, while their books remained unaudited.

Ex-CIO boss Bonyongwe admitted that the government spooks were given shares at Kusena Mine in order to finance their operations as Treasury was struggling to meet their financial needs.

Other witnesses that will appear over issues of diamond mining include current CIO boss Ambassador Isaac Moyo, the Zimbabwe Republic Police Border Control Unit and Anjin Mining Company where the army allegedly had shares.

The Mines Committee will also receive oral evidence from Sakunda Holdings over the Dema Power project, which reportedly gobbled between 10,8 million and 12 million litres of diesel per month.

Legislators still want clarity on why a statutory instrument was issued in November for duty-free fuel to Dema when the project was actually abandoned a year ago. The legislators also felt that Zimbabwe Power Company failed to conduct due diligence checks on the Dema Project before it was implemented, and they suspected that the duty-free fuel might have leaked to the black market.

Several other former government bigwigs have been summoned to appear before Parliament for questioning over businessman Wicknell Chivayo's shady Gwanda Solar Project deal where he was paid $7 million before the launch of the project.

These include former Energy ministers Samuel Undenge, Elton Mangoma, former deputy minister Munashe Mutezo, Energy secretary Partson Mbiriri, Zimbabwe Power Company officials, Zesa board chairperson Herbert Murerwa and chief executive officer Josh Chifamba.

Source - newsday