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Impounded smuggled goods overwhelm Zimra

by Staff reporter
15 Feb 2019 at 08:31hrs | Views
ZIMRA is overwhelmed by impounded smuggled goods that are piling and taking up space at three warehouses in Mutare.

Zimra regional manager Mr Innocent Chikuni told heads of Government departments during a tour of the three warehouses on Tuesday that they were overwhelmed by the volumes of impounded goods.

"We have three warehouses which we are using to store the impounded goods, but we are now renting another one because of the rate of smuggling along the Zimbabwe-Mozambique border," he said.

Responding to Mr Chikuni's remarks, the Minister of State for Manicaland Provincial Affairs Dr Ellen Gwaradzimba said the tax collector should expedite the distribution of impounded goods to the less privileged across the province to free up storage space.

"We moved around the Zimra warehouses and realised that there are volumes of smuggled goods in stock. We understand that these smuggled goods should be distributed to less privileged on a quarterly basis. The process should be expedited," she said.

Dr Gwaradzimba said the distribution of the goods to charity was very slow considering that Zimra was given the green light to do so by the Ministry of Social Welfare.

She suggested that the goods should be distributed weekly, instead of quarterly.

Dr Gwaradzimba also recommended that impounded cars that have been forfeited to the State be distributed to Government departments.

After touring the warehouses, the delegation which included members of the Joint Operation Command, proceeded to Forbes Border Post where haulage trucks were reportedly causing congestion on the Zimbabwean side.

They wanted to explore ways to decongest the border and ascertain on what was causing current challenges.

After discussing with Zimra officials, who blamed transporters and clearing agents for congestion, it was agreed that stringent measures be put in place against truckers who park at the exit point before being cleared.

"There are internal processes that should be followed before the haulage trucks pass through the border and I noted that there was laxity of law enforcement because some of the truck drivers queue at the exit, thereby obstructing other vehicles.

"We have agreed that police should enforce the rules so that there will be a single lane," she said.

Dr Gwaradzimba said there was need to speed up the transformation of the Forbes Border Post into a 24-hour entry point.

Zimra is also expected to engage clearing agents and transporters to make sure that the rules are not violated.

Source - manicapost

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