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PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe has admitted he also stashed scarce bank notes at home, fearing he may not readily be able to access his savings if he took them to local banks.

Speaking in a lengthy interview with State media on the eve of his birthday this Tuesday, the 93-year-old leader said he understood the dilemma faced by ordinary Zimbabweans he said were now in the habit of keeping their monies under “pillows and briefcases” back at home.

“That’s what has happened; these homes are stashed with cash,” Mugabe said.

“If we unleash the police and soldiers and say go yee, house by house and dig for the funds that are being hidden there; don’t take them as yours but dig them up and tell us who and who have them, you (interviewee) will be guilty, I would be guilty.

“I don’t know who will not be guilty because we are all afraid we may not be able to access our monies tomorrow if we deposit it, so you tend to keep it.”

He added: “It’s not your fault, it’s not my fault, it’s not his fault, it’s the fault of a system that has not yielded enough cash.”

The Zimbabwean leader and his lieutenants in government including the top brass in the country’s security establishments have often been accused of spiriting away loads of cash for safe keeping in foreign banks.

Former finance minister Tendai Biti is on record as saying more than a billion in US dollars was taken out of the country during the months preceding the 2013 elections as fears of a change of government grew.


Biti has also revealed that President Mugabe often took up to $6 million in travelling allowances each time he flew out of the country and does not return any change to the national coffers.

Top government officials have been accused of contributing to the current liquidity crunch which has seen depositors toil to access their monies from local banks since early last year.

The country’s central bank has imposed bank withdrawal limits and further introduced the much loathed bond notes in attempts to ease the liquidity crisis.

President Mugabe said the US dollar was a foreign currency that fell in the US sanctions regime against Zimbabwe and attempts to replenish the notes in circulation through the importation of crispier notes was near impossible.

“We have not been able to replenish the dollars,” Mugabe said adding that most US dollar notes are soiled because they were not being exchanged for new notes.

SOURCE: New Zimbabwe








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