Home » Business » It’s Not My Fault, Says Mpofu

Former Mines and Mining Development Minister Obert Mpofu yesterday distanced himself from the alleged pledge of $50 million towards the Zimunya-Marange Community Share Ownership Trust by five diamond mining companies operating in Marange.

Minister Mpofu, who is now in charge of the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructural Development, said he was involved in all the other launches of Community Share Ownership Trusts to do with mining across the country except the Zimunya-Marange.

He made the remarks when he appeared before the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Youth, Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment chaired by Zanu-PF MP for Gokwe-Nembudziya Cde Justice Mayor Wadyajena.

Former Youth, Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment Minister Saviour Kasukuwere, who presided over the launch of several Community Share Ownership Trusts, said the companies Mbada Diamonds, Marange Resources, Anjin Investments, Jinan and Diamond Mining Corporation – pledged $10 million each when President Mugabe launched the scheme in 2012.

But when the companies appeared before the same committee last year, expressed ignorance to the establishment of the trust with only Anjin Investments claiming to have pledged about $1,5 million.

Minister Mpofu also professed ignorance to the establishment of the trust saying it was under the purview of then Minister of Indigenisation Cde Kasukuwere.

“I have no recollection as to the invitation to this function,” he said.

“If you also look at records that are of public information, we attended most of the launches in Ngezi, Gwanda, Hwange functions. But I have no recollection as to the communication regarding this specific one.” Cde Wadyajena asked Minister Mpofu to confirm if he had any discussions with Minister Kasukuwere about the pledges and his subsequent instructions to ZMDC and the other diamond mining firms.

He added that when Minister Kasukuwere appeared before the committee recently, he advised them that the pledges had been discussed at senior level as such, there was no need to engage the companies directly.

“I don’t remember entering into any agreement with ZMDC to make any pledge. In fact, there was no such an agreement. This is a serious decision that would require proper documentation of that arrangement. You don’t discuss such major transactions verbally.

“If there was such an arrangement there should have been some documentation to that effect and I am not aware of that documentation,” said Minister Mpofu.

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February 2018
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