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Chiwenga carries out dark threats to money changers



VICE-PRESIDENT Constantino Chiwenga has delivered on his threats made in Bulawayo during the Trade Fair and later in Harare against money changers by overseeing the arrest of Neville Mutsvangwa, son of Zanu PF spokesperson Christopher Mutsvangwa and cabinet minister Monica Mutsvangwa.


Neville was arrested when Chiwenga was acting president while President Emmerson Mnangagwa was out of the country in Nairobi, Kenya, attending the African Fertiliser and Soil Health Summit.

Delivering his main speech at the International Business Conference held last month at the 64th edition of the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF) in Bulawayo, Chiwenga said the new ZiG currency would serve as a reliable medium of exchange, a store of value and unit of account to support the government’s efforts of attracting investment and warned people and business enterprises who would want to manipulate it.

“The new currency will, therefore, not be subject to exchange rate volatility or manipulation by speculators… So speculators should cease. Some were running around trying to play around in the supermarkets, we know. Behave or you will get shut down or we will lock you (up),” warned the VP.

On a separate occasion, while addressing a gathering in Harare on 23 April, Chiwenga said money changers should stop it, or else risk being rendered crippled.

“The buying and selling of ZiG on black market is a criminal offence similar to selling of gold illegally,” Chiwenga warned.

He added: “Hatide kuti uzokanganiswe wozoita hupenyu waremara.” Loosely translated (We wouldn’t want you to end up being crippled after being attacked.)

Through the arrest, Neville’s father has been hoist by his own petard after he issued a stern warning in April to black market traders whom he accused of running down the ZiG currency.

Speaking at a Press conference, the Zanu-PF secretary for information and publicity said only the price of gold should determine the exchange rate of the ZiG, adding that the state security apparatus were on the lookout for those trading at a “false value”.

“This is blasphemy, this is the duplicity of the worst possible kind. What am I saying? I am saying to those who want to run down the ZiG, trading and giving it a false value, our security apparatus will be alert this time.

“We want to ask you about the price you are giving out: where did you get it?
Gold in Masvingo and gold in Mutare the price is the same as the one in Burkina Faso or Bolivia, so this price of yours you want to charge for the rate of exchange for ZiG in US dollars, where did you get it other than these institutions and give us an explained brief where you got it”, said Mutsvangwa.

Neville was picked up on Wednesday afternoon by detectives from the Criminal Investigations Department’s commercial crimes division after he appeared to post on his WhatsApp status the ZiG black market rate of 18.50 against the United States dollar.

After his arrest, police spokesperson Paul Nyathi issued a public statement saying: “The Zimbabwe Republic Police confirms the arrest of Neville Sunungurai Mutsvangwa (44), Elias Majachani (45) and Simbarashe Tichingana (38) for contravening section 14 (1) of the Bank Use Promotion and Suppression of Money Laundering Act, Chapter 24:24,” Nyathi said. “The trio is expected to appear in court on 10 May 2024.”

When the trio appeared before Harare magistrate Dennis Mangosi, they were remanded in custody awaiting finalisation of their bail hearing next week, meaning they have spent the weekend behind bars at Harare Central Remand Prison.

In an audio circulating on social media platforms, Neville’s mother, Monica, is heard saying the charges were cooked up. She said: “It’s definitely political victimisation because my son doesn’t trade in foreign currency, he doesn’t trade in ZiG, so I don’t know what it is and why it had to wait for me to be out of the country. It appears it was timed to coincide with my absence.”

Chiwenga and Christopher Mutsvangwa do not see eye to eye.

In December 2021, the then Norton Independent candidate Norton independent Temba Mliswa said Mutsvangwa was eyeing Chiwenga’s job as VP.

Mliswa described Mutsvangwa as an individual bent on creating chaos, confusion, and divisions while seeking the VP’s post.

“However, with Chris Mutsvangwa now the spokesperson it’s utter chaos from now on. He has always had an ambition to be a VP,” Mliswa claimed.

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