MAIN opposition Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) has denounced the Reserve bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ)’s Financial Intelligence Unit move to unfreeze unfreeze accounts and assets of individuals implicated in alleged smuggling and money laundering, as per Al Jazeera’s documentary series “Gold Mafia”.
A few days back, the speaker of parliament Jacob Mudenda also banned parliamentary investigations into the same issues.
The unfreezing of assets came just three days after parliamentary committees were denied the opportunity to investigate the evidence presented in the Gold Mafia documentary.
CCC said this raised concerns regarding the government’s commitment to accountability and transparency and demanded swift action to bring those implicated to book.
“ARREST GOLD MAFIA: Just three days after the parliamentary committees were denied the chance to investigate the overwhelming evidence presented in the #GoldMafia documentary by the Speaker of Parliament, Advocate Jacob Mudenda, the RBZ’s Financial Intelligence Unit issued a directive to unfreeze financial assets belonging to individuals allegedly involved in the theft and smuggling of Zimbabwean gold. We strongly condemn these actions that appear to be aimed at obstructing a proper investigation.
“This raises significant concerns about the government’s commitment to accountability and transparency. We urge swift action to be taken to investigate this issue fully and bring those found to be involved in illicit activity to justice,” said CCC in a statement.
The freeze targeted Uebert Angel, Ewan MacMillan, Simon Rudland and Kamlesh Pattini who admitted to accepting money to facilitate gold smuggling and money laundering in the series.
In justifying its decision, the FIU said no transactions linked to money laundering were found related to the allegations in the documentary and found no good reason for the freezing order to remain in place.