Authorities has, with instant impact, undertaken a collection of prudent and coordinated interventions to cope with malpractices, criminality and financial sabotage perpetrated by the “wolves in sheep skins amongst our inhabitants” that His Excellency the President alluded to throughout his official handle on the event of the Hero’s burial of Cde Stanley Nleya (Gagisa) on the Nationwide Shrine.

These measures embody the suspension of all financial transactions on phone-based cell cash platforms in an effort to facilitate intrusive investigations, resulting in the arrest and prosecution of offenders.

Concurrently, the measures may also embody the suspension of all buying and selling on the Zimbabwe Inventory Change.

These measures are to subsist till such time that the cell cash platforms have been reformed to their authentic goal and all the present phantom charges of alternate have converged into one real price that’s decided by market forces underneath the International Forex Public sale System which was launched by the Reserve Financial institution of Zimbabwe on 23rd June 2020.

Operational modalities and particulars of the envisaged measures are going to be introduced by the related financial, regulatory and legislation enforcement authorities within the subsequent few days.

Authorities will concurrently be certain that prudent measures are additionally put in place to mitigate and forestall any collateral harm that these interventions could trigger to the harmless transacting public who had been utilizing these platforms.

Authorities is in possession of impeccable intelligence which constitutes a prima facie case whereby the phone-based cell cash methods of Zimbabwe are conspiring, with the assistance of the Zimbabwe Inventory Change, both intentionally or inadvertently, in illicit actions which are sabotaging the financial system.

These actions embody: –

a) Unlawful externalization of overseas forex by switch mispricing;

b) Appearing as banks exterior the aim for which they had been initially licensed, as non-banking monetary establishments. This contains, within the specific case of Ecocash, holding properly in extra of ZWL$eight billion distributed throughout simply over 501 000 agent/service provider traces as lat 10 June 2020, which isn’t underneath the scrutiny of the Monetary Intelligence Unit;

c) Fraudulently creating and issuing non-attributable and non-auditable agent cellphone traces/accounts;

d) Hiding irreconcilable accounts in suspense accounts which maintain enormous credit score balances for unjustifiably lengthy intervals;

e) Ecocash, specifically, is appearing because the centre pivot of the galloping black market overseas alternate price and due to this fact, fuelling the incessant value hikes of products and providers which are bedevilling the financial system and inflicting untold hardship to the individuals of Zimbabwe.

On this regard, it has been conspiring with huge retailers to behave as their conduit by which they switch tons of of thousands and thousands of {dollars} per day to runners on the road who then purchase US {Dollars} on their behalf;

f) Rampant, usually conceited, non-compliance with directives issued by the Reserve Financial institution of Zimbabwe and the Monetary Intelligence Unit;

g) Facilitating illicit commerce in notes and cash, at contrived charges of between 30% and 50%, thus inflicting synthetic shortages of the identical inside the banking system;

h) Criminally permitting agent traces that had been banned by the RBZ to proceed buying and selling illegally;

i) Utilizing bulk airtime gross sales at discounted costs that are cross rated to phantom USD alternate charges, which additional distort the Zimbabwe market and intentionally mop up US {Dollars} from the black market, thus forcing up the speed of alternate in a fashion that has hitherto been tough to clarify for
the financial authorities;

j) Partaking in rampant unchecked tax evasion;

okay) Failure to report suspicious transactions or to take motion in opposition to them;

l) Creation of unlawful transient and everlasting cash by airtime loans, unaccounted wallet-to-bank and bank-to-wallet transactions and different malpractices;

m) Sustaining unauditable cell phone traces or accounts that are being utilized by felony syndicates, in connivance with insiders, to steal cash from subscribers by such fraudulent practices as teeming and lading;

n) Appearing as conduits for the circulation of counterfeit USD notes; and

o) Facilitating felony actions by the non-enforcement of KYC necessities; and

Ecocash, OneMoney, Telecash and MyCash Cell Cash platforms are all complicit in these illicit actions in various levels. Ecocash, nevertheless, which controls almost 94% of all cell cash transactions, is the centre pivot of this downside and its resultant influence on Zimbabwe’s financial system.

The influence is exacerbated by the existence of pretend counters on the Zimbabwe Inventory Change, which is epitomized by the so-called Previous Mutual Implied Change Fee (OMIR). This, in flip, ends in 4 or extra US: ZWL parallel market alternate charges working out there.

At any time, due to this fact, there may be the official price, an Ecocash price, a OneMoney price and the OMIR amongst others. Because the RBZ Governor aptly noticed lately, there are a number of contrived phantom alternate charges in use within the Zimbabwe Financial system, which conspire to defeat fiscal coverage.

Assertion issued by
N Mangwana
Secretary for Data, Publicity and Broadcasting Companies

Author: Takudzwa Abioye

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