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Zimbabwe freezes assets of officials implicated in the “Gold Mafia” scandal

Zimbabwe freezes assets of officials implicated in the “Gold Mafia” scandal

Gold Mafia 2

The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) has frozen the assets of four officials who are implicated in gold smuggling, money laundering, bribery and other corrupt activities whose self-incriminating comments are contained in a documentary by Al Jazeera titled “Gold Mafia”.

This comes as Government on Tuesday directed relevant State organs to institute investigations into the allegations that were raised in the documentary where some people are on record admitting to receiving kickbacks from the alleged gold mafia.

The government has also warned people in the habit of namedropping and boastful behaviour as captured in the documentary to desist from such practices.

In that vein, the FIU has since moved to freeze the assets of individuals who are implicated in the documentary.

In a memo seen by The Herald, the FIU directs that the assets of Cleopas Chidodo, David Chirozvi, Mehlululi Dube and Fredrick Kunaka be frozen.

“You are being directed to immediately identify and freeze all assets of the following individuals; Cleopas Chidodo, David Chirozvi, Mehlululi Dube and Fredrick Kunaka. May you also freeze all assets of legal persons and arrangements associated with them. Kindly treat this request as urgent,” read the memo in part.

Chidodo is the Civil Aviation Authority of Zimbabwe Head of Security who was captured in Episode 2 of the documentary detailing how he assists gold smugglers avoid detection as they transport their contraband to Dubai via Robert Gabriel Mugabe International Airport, while Chirozvi is the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe’s Aurex Jewellery Head of Finance.

Kunaka is the former General Manager of Fidelity Printers and Refiners. He was allegedly on the payroll of the gold mafia during which he received a kickback of US$30 000 a month, according to the documentary.

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Dube, who was allegedly being paid US$3 000 per month by the gold smuggling syndicate, is associated with Golden Beryl Private Limited.

The four form part of the team that has been aiding criminal elements in smuggling gold and abusing their positions.

Government broke silence on nthe gold mafia scandal when Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister Monica Mutsvangwa told journalists on Tuesday that Government has instituted investigations around the Al Jazeera documentary in which some people have been accused of corruption, fraud, and other criminal activities.


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