RBZ deploys crack team on retailers

Dr Mangudya

Dr Mangudya

Golden Sibanda, Senior Business Reporter
THE Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe says it has deployed teams on the ground to deal with issues of indiscipline by some traders who have insisted on multi-tier pricing for different modes of payment.

RBZ Governor Dr John Mangudya said they were working on reining in errant traders in line with provisions of the Bank Use and Promotion Act, amid concern some retailers continue to hoard cash and illegally trade in foreign currency.

“Our teams are working on the issues of indiscipline being perpetuated by some traders. We have since established a hotline for the public to report to the Reserve Bank instances of such malpractices for a reward of 5 percent of reported and recovered funds.”

Some errant retailers have continued to engage in multi tier pricing of goods for the different forms of payment across the country despite repeated warnings from the central bank that they risk arrest as the practice was in violation of the banking legislation.

In terms of banking cash or proceeds of business, the law says “Every trader and parastatal shall, unless it has good cause for not doing so, deposit in an account with a financial institution no later than the close of normal business hours on the day following that on which the cash is received or on the next banking day.”

The Act also says “No person other than a financial institution or moneylender shall exchange any negotiable instrument for cash at a premium.” Where this is allowed, it must be within confine of the law.

In a bid to entice customers to use cash, some traders pegged steep prices or charge a premium for payment modes other than cash. In other instances, the traders do not bank proceeds from their activities, a situation that has worsened prevailing cash shortages.

According to the Bank Use Promotion Act (Chapter 24:24), it is an offence to use different pricing models for different payment systems namely cash, Real Times Gross Settlement (RTGS), internet and Point of Sale or a combination of any two or more of them. The same Act also prohibits hoarding cash and not banking it.

The central bank has since called for increased use of other approved alternative forms of payment in the wake of the widespread shortage of cash due to high demand against limited inflow.

This is because Zimbabwe uses a basket of foreign currencies, mainly the dollar, which is in high demand globally and is therefore easily externalised while its high import bill also causes the little available hard currency to find its way out of the country.

The central bank said last week that it was putting in place measures to promote the use of plastic money and other platforms, make them cheaper and more attractive than using cash.

Plastic and electronic platforms currently account for 70 percent of retail transactions. Intended measures include downward review of charges on plastic money and electronic transactions.

Confederation of Zimbabwe Retailers president Denford Mutashu said the Government should punish retailers found on the wrong side of the law, as RBZ had warned retailers against any malpractices.

He said while the majority of CZR members were now compliant with the law, there still were pockets of errant operators who need to be reined in. He said CZR will not defend any offenders.

“It is unfortunate that we continue to witness market indiscipline yet when such retailers open businesses in other countries . . . they follow the law to letter. The Government of Zimbabwe has done its job to create a good business environment and retailers should not be seen to be taking advantage of a situation where business wants to self regulate,” he said.

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  • #MugabePresidency4Ever

    Dr Mangudya, why have you not raided ZESA after it was reported yesterday in the Chronicle that they are conspiring with their export customers, particularly ferro chrome exporters, to divert monies from the exporters’ illegal foreign accounts, money that should flow into Zimbabwe’s nostro accounts and instead pay Eskom in South Africa without the RBZ’s approval?

    That is nothing other than the externalisation of US Dollars. That money should flow into Zimbabwe banks and then the RBZ can competently decide the priority of the payments to foreign suppliers.

    If you want to prove you are competent to be our Reserve Bank Governor start fighting externalisation at the top, where the sums involved are in the millions of dollars.


    February 21, 2017 will be celebrated by all patriotic Zimbabweans as the day Cde Robert Mugabe anointed Dr Grace Mugabe as his successor, “She is accepted by the people,” he declared. “Munhu wese kuna Amai,” we shout in reply!

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  • Lux

    They want us to bank so they can raid our bank accounts just like the old hyper inflation days!

    • MakhosiXamu

      Ngamanga lawo..shit yakho.

      • Zuze

        Good Morning Xamu. I don’t think you are an expert on this because you are part of the raiders. How do I know? Because for you you can never ever condemn anything that the raiders do. Lux on the other hand has proof because it happened before under the same circumstances.

        • Lux

          Thank you Zuze!

      • Danny

        Please take your cash to the bank first then we’ll follow. A bank is a business I dont understand why one must be forced to conduct a transaction if they don’t trust the banking system.

        • Zuze

          He will never take his money to the bank. He wants to withdraw yours kkkkkkkkk

  • Lux

    Ed you are deleting my responses directed towards makhosixhamu! His allowed to use profane language,that’s not fair unless YOU are xamu!

  • Young

    Why is it that ZRP members ignore people in the street holding huge volumes of both bond and USD notes. At OK Gweru next to parcel counter, there was a young man who was exchanging USD for bond notes. While I was waiting for my child , a two middle aged women come and gave him 4 x$100 dollars bill in exchange for 2dollars bond notes. This is happening in broad day light and surely that money is somehow being abused. We do not need police force with specialized skills to deal with this.

    • N. Sithole

      Your observation is apt. Go to Roadport (Harare) right now. A 100 usd note fetches up to 107 bond. It’s happening in full glare of the “authorities” and these guys expect us to take them seriously?!

    • sibangilizwe

      Yes , he cannot be arrested because thus the USD which then taken to Singapore which each time he goes to Singapore. The diaspora sends FOREX to Zimbabwe and Sekuru takes it to Singapore after printing the bond notes in exchange of the usd. simple.

    • vusumuzi

      The first starting point for the Governor is the Amapostoli/Osiphatheleni, who do their ‘business” in broad day light, and in the sight of all, including the CIO, CID, ZRP, Gugurahundi , etc!!!. Why target genuine Business which pays Tax and leave out Forex Exchangers who make profit daily but dont pay Tax ??? Under whose employ are the Sphathelenis???Can someone answer??

      • nda

        how come SA doesn’t face the same money challenges despite that its rand also spills to some countries including here

  • ntethelelo

    Governor put more effort and deal with these loop holes, l know you can

    • vusumuzi

      also expect diesel from a rock. ukuba ubutshwala wena ube uzoba yisidudu !!!!