22 March 2019

Zimbabwe: RBZ Boss Chiremba Off the Hook, State to Proceed By Way of Summons

Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) boss, Mirirai Chiremba who is facing criminal abuse of office charges, has been freed after the state failed to finalise investigations.

Chiremba, the RBZ's head of Financial Intelligence Unit was removed from remand on Thursday by Harare magistrate Rumbidzai Mugwagwa after the State failed to make any progress with regards to investigating allegations levelled against him.

Mugwagwa ruled "the State should continue by way of summons after putting it's house in order."

"The state has been giving the same reasons for postponement and the court is of the view that no prejudice will be suffered if the case continues by way of summons," she ruled.

Prosecutor Zivanai Macharaga did not oppose the application.

Chiremba is facing charges of criminal abuse of duty for allegedly raising the withdrawal limit of a company without following procedure.

Allegations are that on October 13, last year, Suzan General Trading opened an NMB account at the Borrowdale Branch which was meant to facilitate payments by Fidelity Printers and Refiners for gold delivered by Suzan.

At the time, the corporate withdrawal limit was US$10 000 per day. On October 27, Suzan through one of its signatories, Shah Saumilkumar filed an application to NMB requesting for the withdrawal limit to be raised to US$30 000. NMB carried out reviews of the application before transferring it to the RBZ financial unit for processing.

Chiremba approved the application on November 3. On February 23, Suzan successfully applied for their daily limit to be increased to US$95 000 due to business expansion.

Suzan tendered another application for the limit to be raised to US$195 000 on August 3 which Chiremba allegedly approved before it was processed by the RBZ Financial Intelligence Unit.

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