Gono must swallow pride

ALLOW us space to air our views on the mess created by Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe governor Gideon Gono.


A lot has been said on the formation of the Zimbabwe Allied

Banking Group (ZABG), Gono’s brainchild. Though it may have been a good idea, many questions are still being asked:


Did Gono create the ZABG for the enrichment of his curriculum vitae, for personal gain or to add value to all stakeholders – including shareholders? Is there any public interest in the ZABG?


From what has happened so far, including the landmark Supreme Court ruling, it is apparent that the governor did not create the ZABG for the benefit of all stakeholders! Check the following:


* No stakeholder involvement. No single meeting was convened with depositors, shareholders, creditors and staff members. It was as if only the RBZ was the creditor and the ZABG was merely formed out of RBZ directives.


This means it was not meant to be a solution to all affected stakeholders, but was rather created in “settlement of scores”. What scores? Only Gono knows!


* Unrealistic deadlines resulting in rushed and roughly considered decisions. Formation or even the amalgamation of banks, the world over, is not an overnight event but a process.


In the case of the ZABG, the good governor considered it fit to amalgamate at least three banks in a month or two. Is this realistic? It requires a lot of consultation; you can’t know it all good “guvnor”.


The governor and his cronies formed the ZABG in the guise of national interest. What national interest considering the obscene salaries the the ZABG executives are giving each other?


This is pure plundering of resources by people who did not sweat for them. The people who created these resources are the ones suffering. What a shame!


The message to Gono is clear: you can’t know it all, listen to others and consult before you make your aimless errands.


* The appointment of executive managers before appointing the board of directors. This was one of the biggest mistakes the good governor made.

In the good tenets of corporate governance, which Gono preaches daily, it is the board of directors that appoints senior management. How then do they become accountable to the board?


In what capacity did Gono appoint the ZABG executives? Is the RBZ the only shareholder? It is now clear that the appointments were personally driven by Gono and his cronies at the RBZ.


Is it a coincidence that four senior executives worked together with Gono’s chief economic advisor at Stanbic Bank? Is it also a coincidence that the ZABG’s group treasurer worked with Gono at the CBZ?


* Deficiency of properly qualified, experienced and focused executive management. With very narrow academic profiles, most of these executives are people whose professional shelf-life is over and had reached the ceiling of their careers wherever they were.


They have little to offer. They have apparently lost the zeal and power of creativity, sophistication and innovation, which modern banking requires. To compensate for such deficiency they rule by threats.


The CEO himself failed at the RBZ as director of supervision and surveillance. He presided over the banking chaos which ironically Gono himself claims existed before he took over as governor.


Why did the RBZ give him a retrenchment package? How could the RBZ retrench a useful skill? Certainly this person has failed and cannot lead such a mammoth bank.


From the above, it is clear that the ZABG has no future except if there is a bold decision by the board to appoint educated, experienced and focused senior managers not the current ones who spend time monitoring people’s e-mails and listening to staff’s telephone conversations all day long.


Gono, please spare us – we are fed up as taxpayers! We know you are a stubborn man, but swallow your pride and reverse some of your unwise decisions on the ZABG.


The courts have proved you wrong and just accept it. Posterity will give judgement!


Concerned Taxpayers,

Harare.