Home » Governance » Mutasa Distances Self From Mliswa Claims

ZANU-PF secretary for administration, Dydmus Mutasa has distanced himself from claims by the party’s Mashonaland West provincial chairperson, Temba Mliswa, that he tried to facilitate an out-of-court settlement in a US$165 million dispute Mliswa has with businessman, Conrad Billy Rautenbach.

Mliswa also alleged that his uncle, Mutasa, used his influence as a party heavyweight in Manicaland province to allow Rautenbach to set up the Chisumbanje ethanol plant.

Arda chairperson, Basil Nyabadza, who Mliswa said had a house bought for him by Rautenbach, also said he knew nothing in terms of the allegations made and would privately pursue action against the Hurungwe West legislator.

He declined to say what action he would be taking, though previously, he had said he would file a complaint with the police.

State-owned Arda is a shareholder in the Chisumbanje project, which is trading as Green Fuel.

Mliswa has claimed he is owed more than US$165 million for facilitating Rautenbach’s interests in Hwange Colliery, Unki Platinum and Chisumbanje.

In his allegations, he dragged in the Arda chair and Mutasa, who is also Zimbabwe’s Presidential Affairs Minister.

But Mutasa yesterday distanced himself from claims by his controversial niece.

“I don’t want to be interviewed about those issues. They have nothing to do with me. Mliswa has got his own life and I have my own life. Don’t mix. I don’t want to talk about that again,” he said.

Nyabadza on his part, said, “I have already taken a position after I took some aice. I will handle it from a personal point of view.”

He said his action would be made known when the time is ripe.

“I am not saying I have abandoned the (police) case. It’s a personal issue that I will handle as such,” said Nyabadza, who resigned from his post as ZANU-PF Manicaland interim provincial chair after he unsuccessfully lobbied for Mutasa to land the party’s national chairman’s post.

Two weeks ago, Mliswa said Mutasa and Nyabadza had tried to mediate in his multimillion dollar dispute with Rautenbach.

He said he helped Rautenbach get platinum concessions at Unki and to supply coal to Hwange Colliery.

Mliswa said Rautenbach sold the Unki concessions for US$1 billion and he was entitled to 10 percent of that (US$100 million).

Further, he said he was not paid US$10 per tonne of coal and US$5 per tonne of coke supplied by Rautenbach to Hwange.

He alleged the money was not paid.

On top of that, he wants ten percent of the value of Green Fuel, which he said was worth US$650 million.

Mliswa said Rautenbach exported ethanol and coal even as Zimbabwe faced an energy crisis.

He went on, “The onus is on you (journalists) to go and ask the Honourable Minister (Mutasa) ‘did Billy ask you to settle this out of court?’ Because he is an Honourable MP and he so happens to be my uncle, I trusted my uncle. I decided that the matter be settled out of court because he had gone and asked him to do that.

“Basil Nyabadza was there. I am the one who took Billy to Arda. Basil Nyabadza never knew Billy. Why was I in a flight from Harare to Arda? Certainly I was not a flight attendant. It is a helicopter. A helicopter does not need a flight attendant. So what was I doing?

“It would be good for him (Billy) to answer what I was doing on that flight,” he said.

Mliswa said he wanted to set up the ethanol plant but did not have the finances, hence he roped in Rautenbach.

He claimed Rautenbach bought Nyabadza a house in Mutare and gave “brown envelopes” to several politicians – who he said he would soon expose – to oil his deals.

Source : New Zimbabwe