We Were Right As Gono Is Exposed To Be Contuining Stealing
The IMF has called on Tendai Biti to budget for the Reserve Bank after the Bretton Woods Institution uncovered scandalous theft of statutory reserve money by the Central Bank to continue funding quasi-fiscal operations this year. Books at the Central bank have also been cooked to allow for the dispersal of money belonging to banks to fund foreign trips by government officials and certain well-known shoppers at taxpayers' expense. Gono did not seek or get approval from Biti for this shady behaviour. He acted like he was the Finance Minister
Harare, Zimbabwe, 30 October 2009
We revealed on this blog a little while back that Mugabe had given Gideon Gono widespread ministerial powers and that the MDC-T were aware of this fact.
The IMF, after an audit of the Reserve Bank, has effectively confirmed our story, revealing that the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe continues to steal funds its custody and using these to continue quasi-fiscal operations.
The Central has been taking money belonging to Zimbabwe's Commercial and Merchant Banks as well as Discount Houses and Financial institutions. With this money, Gono has been dishing out patronage to Air Zimbabwe as well as paying for operating expenses.
He has even used some of the money to pay for Mugabe's Presidential Scholarships.
All in all, Gono has used more than US$45 million from statutory reserves deposited with him by the banks.
Some of the money is being marked against expenditure items that do not exist: it is misappropriation basically, when Gono, instead of writing down that he has given Grace Mugabe US$80 000 to go to Hong Kong, writes instead that he has used US$800 000 to fund the operations of the Zimbabwe Consulate in Hong Kong, the Zimbabwe embassy in Beijing or this and that Embassy.
The IMF is worried that this means that, in the event of a crisis in the banking sector, the Central will fall short on the amount of money it would need to bail out banks.
More shocking, however, is that this is again theft, which is continuing even with the Inclusive Government in place: Gono is basically taking money that does not belong to him, but to the banks in Zimbabwe and using this to finance ZANU PF's favourite projects and pets.
This money should not have been touched by Gono without ministerial approval. His job is simply to keep it safe in case there is need to bail out banks in a moment of crisis.
Tendai Biti should have the final say in a moment of crisis on whether Gono can use that money for purposes other than what it is intended for.
This has not been happening.
The IMF has now called on Biti to please budget for the Reserve Bank in order to obviate the theft of statutory reserve funds by the Central Bank. Gono has argued that he had to do this because Biti did not budget for the Central Bank and he had to continue operations somehow.
Yet, in his mid-term fiscal policy review, Biti gave the Reserve Bank US$3 million for its operations.
But Gono's appetite is so keen that this was not enough, he had to go and raid banks' statutory reserves to the tune of more than US$45 million!!
No action can be taken against Gono for this breach of faith, because Mugabe continues to protect him.