Nduduzo Tshuma, Bulawayo Bureau
President Emmerson Mnangagwa has said he will today meet the Reserve Bank Governor Dr John Mangudya to look at the progress of the moratorium he gave Zimbabweans who externalised cash to repatriate the monies.
The three- month moratorium given on November 28 last year, expired yesterday.
In an interview at the Robert Mugabe International Airport in Harare soon after arrival from the Democratic Republic of Congo, President Mnangagwa said after his meeting with Dr Mangudya he will also pronounce what would be done to those who failed to heed the moratorium.
“I will be having a meeting with the Governor of the Reserve Bank tomorrow to look at the progress that has been made and also the lack of progress that has been made then we make a decision after that meeting,” he said.
President Mnangagwa said in the last two briefings with Dr Mangudya he was looking at the amounts of monies that have been repatriated into the country.
“At the course of the period, I have looked twice, some patriotic comrades have repatriated their funds back, the list is too long, the figure will be announced when the final position is arrived at,” he said.
Announcing the grace period, the President said Operation Restore Legacy which was launched by the Zimbabwe Defence Forces in November last year, unearthed serious economic crimes.
The President said then that those who failed to return the loot within the stipulated period were going to be prosecuted.
“Activities linked to the Operation Restore Legacy have, among other issues, helped to uncover cases where huge amounts of money and other assets were illegally externalised by certain individuals and corporates. Needless to say such malpractice constitutes a serious economic crime against the people of Zimbabwe which the Government of Zimbabwe will never condone,” President Mnangagwa said last November.
Addressing delegates during Zanu-PF extraordinary congress in Harare in December, the President said he had knowledge of those who had externalised funds.
“I didn’t say that without knowledge. I have a list of who took money out. So in March when the period expires, those who would not have heeded to my moratorium I will name them and shame them,” he said.
The President warned that those who fail to heed his call will be arrested and prosecuted.
In an interview in Davos, Switzerland in January, President Mnangagwa expressed satisfaction that his call on funds and assets’ return was being heeded.
“I think you are aware that I made a three month moratorium on those who had taken assets of Zimbabwe outside the country, I’m glad to say few days ago I had a brief from my Governor of the Reserve Bank (Dr John Mangudya) that many people who had taken assets outside the country, some have brought back the funds, some are in the process of negotiating,” he said.
The President said it was easy to trace those who externalised the funds.
“Those who have taken funds outside and not come forward, I have the list because the banking fraternity, the financial service sector has been able to give us details on who took out funds and we have that,” said the President.