HomeBusiness DigestGwaradzimba Destroyed my Empire –– Mawere

Gwaradzimba Destroyed my Empire –– Mawere

BUSINESS mogul Mutumwa Mawere lost a combined 100% shareholding in his three companies Steelnet, Turnall and General Belting Holdings to FBC Bank after the firms failed to settle their outstanding debt with the bank which back dates to 2005.

This means FBC Bank is now the majority shareholder in the three companies after Mawere lost 60% in Turnall, Steelnet – 31% and GB Holdings -19%

The debt accrued when administrator Afaras Gwaradzimba was appointed administrator of Mawere’s companies after Mawere was specified.

The value of shares traded in Mawere’s three companies on September 14’s trading was US$9,261 million, slightly below the all time high of shares traded on the whole bourse which was valued at US$9,415 million on July 23.

“The shares sold where used as collateral for the money borrowed from FBC Bank four years ago, Gwaradzimba was handling the transactions. This route had to be taken after they failed to pay back the loan,” said an official from Turnall.

FBC Securities was handed the transactions.

A total of 287 536 313 Turnall shares valued at US$7 188 407 were transacted on the day at 2,5c per share. A total of 162 152 507 Steelnet shares valued at US$648 610 was conducted at 0,4c while 99 million General Belting Holding shares valued at US$495 000 were done at 0,5c.

Mawere is crying foul over how Gwaradzimba has destroyed his empire.

He has never stopped campaigning to expose how his business empire “has been systematically destroyed and sold off by the Zimbabwean government”.
Mawere has engaged Robert Mugabe to try and toget back his companies. He has also engaged former Zambian and South African presidents Kenneth Kaunda and Thabo Mbeki respectively to negotiate with government for the return of his seized companies.

Talks between Mawere and government that commenced in May have since collapsed after Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa, Defence minister Emmerson Mnangagwa and SMM administrator Arafas Gwaradzimba prevailed over central bank governor Gideon Gono’s earlier advice to President Robert Mugabe to return the firms to the tycoon.

The Chinamasa group insisted that Mugabe and Gono should not interfere with court processes as it will set a bad precedent. Mawere had several court cases against government in Zimbabwe and abroad.

The Zimbabwean government is reported to have  spent an estimated £1,3 million to pay top class UK lawyers in England to defend their decision on Mawere’s companies. Mawere also said, the government spent a whopping £150 000 on first class airfares and 5 star accommodation for it’s Zimbabwean representatives who attended the UK courts.

These included government appointed administrator Gwaradzimba and commercial lawyer and government purse man Edwin Manikai. Reserve Bank Governor Gideon Gono sent four representatives.

Mawere was accused of externalising foreign currency and was specified under the Prevention of Corruption Act, in 2004. His mines, together with companies in finance, insurance and agriculture were seized through a presidential decree.

He lost his flagship business, Shabanie Mashaba Mines (SMM Holdings), which he had bought for US$60milion from British company Turner & Newell in 1996, to the state.

Following the expropriation of SMM Holdings by the government, an administrator Gwaradzimba, was appointed to replace the company’s board of directors and assume control of the company. Gwaradzimba is reported to have accused Mutumwa Mawere of asset-stripping the group and starving SMM of foreign currency, leading to its collapse last year.

Mawere was arrested in South Africa in 2004, but freed after Zimbabwe failed in its bid to get him extradited.

Paul Nyakazeya

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