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‘No gold reserves were ever stolen during my tenure’: ex-governor Gideon Gono

‘No gold reserves were ever stolen during my tenure’: ex-governor Gideon Gono

Recent pronouncements by Chris Mutsvangwa, the Zanu PF spokesman falsely alleging that the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe ( RBZ) lost an unspecified quantity of gold to an unnamed Arab country during the tenure of an “unnamed governor” who served under the late former President Robert Mugabe (MHDSRIEP) put the nation in a state of unnecessary frenzy.

If such lies are left unchecked with authentic facts, they could become that “little spark” that sets alight a whole forest at a time when the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe and the country at large have more important issues to deal with than waste time attending to veld-fires whose uncontrolled consequences could end up melting whatever confidence the bank is trying to build around itself, the country and this great nation at large. And how dare we dampen people’s spirits at this “ celebratory hour” with blatant lies?

Ordinarily, past governors are not supposed to comment publicly on matters “current” which a sitting governor is capable of dealing with regardless of which period those matters occurred. However in this case, I feel the need for leadership in dealing with this matter, so that we do not burden our new governor John Mushayavanhu or immediate past governor John Mangudya with an historical matter that I can easily deal with myself without ambiguities or the need to look for Sekuru Ndunge, the late doyen of traditional healing and forecasting to return from the other world so he can provide spiritual proclamations to something that is so straightforward, simple (if we respect TRUTH) and explainable in plain, non-technical English.

If this explanation still proves difficult to understand, I would advocate that we ask President Emmerson Mnangagwa to set up a Commission of Inquiry in terms of the Commission of Inquiry Act (Chapter 10:07) incorporating all interested parties to look into this serious allegation of perfidious proportions and report to the nation its findings in simpler language than I would have done here.

Ordinarily too, no governor would want to comment publicly on any matters he/she dealt with while in office because the Official Secrets Act which binds and prohibits us from commenting on specific documentation received or matters of the state dealt with during our periods in office. Section 4 is particularly telling – level 14 fine or 20 years in jail or both if violated. But I am risking that by putting the record straight in a manner that cleans the image of the nation’s central bank.

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The third reason I have decided to take the bull by the horns is the ambiguous nature of the allegations, casting aspersions on many distinguished personalities who served as governors under former President Robert Mugabe and still carry “scars and pride” of national service equal only to a few living souls around during one of the most difficult economic episodes of our country.

The ex-governors’ integrities ought to be respected and protected in retirement, as well as those ministers of finance under whom they served and reported to. It is my duty to set the record straight for their sake as well as mine, so that our new governor does not take his eyes off the “ZiG ball” to go into the archives of 18 years ago, searching for files and records for a response to this little fire that has deliberately or inadvertently been started with checking facts with all concerned.

For the record, former governors for the period concerned which excludes our inaugural independence governor the late Dr K. Moyana (1983-93) are: Leonard Tsumba (1993-2003); acting governor Charles Chikaura (May 2003-November 2003); acting governor Charity Dhliwayo (December 2013-April 2014); John Mangudya (May,2014-November 2017). These periods were under the late former president Robert Mugabe. I am sure all of them have suffered some distress because the statement from the Ambassador Spokesperson was ambiguous as to who among us could have been that dumb or daft! Now they can all sit back and tell their families and friends “no it was not me who was being referred to!”

I proudly served the longest of that sanctions period, 10 years in all, giving my country the best I could, from December 1, 2003, to November 30, 2013, and it is natural to guess then who did what and when. ZIMLIVE

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