Special advisor to President Emmerson Mnangagwa, Christopher Mutsvangwa has accused Sakunda Holdings owner Kudakwashe Tagwirei of receiving the bulk of the foreign currency allocations from the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe yet he does not earn any forex himself. Mutsvangwa said that Tagwirei’s business takes away money from the people who earn the actual foreign currency such as tobacco farmers and gold panners. Mutsvangwa who also accused Tagwirei of running a virtual monopoly in the fuel industry said that Tagwirei should source his own foreign currency and not rely on the RBZ. Said Mutsvangwa,
Tagwirei’s business gets about US$80 to US$90 million every month for fuel from the RBZ, yet many companies, some of them largest fuel dealers in the world, want to come and invest in the fuel industry in the country. You can ask [Energy] minister Joram Gumbo. There are many who want to come. We can’t have a whole country for one man.
…Tobacco and gold are the two major sources of foreign currency. I also fought hard for chrome to be sold. All the hard-earned foreign currency is given to the RBZ and John Mangudya gives it to Tagwirei. Why can’t he go in the market to source his own foreign currency?… Taking money from panners and giving them digital dollars, phantom money while giving Tagwirei, whose business is simply to sit before a computer and invoice the RBZ, some hard dollars is just being cruel on Zimbabweans…Now that the public knows the truth, it is good. Tagwirei should simply tell the people what he has been doing with the money he was allocated by the RBZ and what makes him merit more allocation than others.
Gold producers have warned that they shut down their operations as they are finding it difficult to continue. The miners complained that they are receiving only 30 percent of their proceeds in actual foreign currency with the other 70 percent being paid in RTGS.
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