In a move which intensifies the battle between Gono and his former close ally, Kereke accused his ex-boss of corruption and theft of funds from his company. In February, Kereke accused Gono of a wide range of crimes, including stealing public funds, including US$6,5 million, to public real estate properties all over.
Gono however did not respond.
However, Kereke yesterday alleged on July 30 2010, Gono through telephonic and email correspondence, irregularly gave an instruction to Rennaissance Merchant Bank (RMB) to transfer funds from RMC’s account number 1000-101683-151 to a company called Dhobhadhobha Construction (Pvt) Ltd. According to copies of alleged email correspondence from Chengeto Dube, the personal assistant to Gono, the payment was supposedly for construction services rendered by the company to “the chicken project”.
Dhobhadhobha managing director Edson Karekaivanani Gono swiftly dismissed Kereke’s allegations as misleading, saying the issue was resolved and there was evidence to that. He sent the media a letter from RMB lawyers Kantor & Immerman to RMC attorneys Gasa Nyamadadzawo & Associates dealing with the issue.
“The media has been sold a dummy and taken for a ride. Our files and correspondence show the issue has been dealt with. Dhobhadhobha has no dog in this fight and we don’t understand why Dr Kereke wants to drag us back into this issue. The settlement was between him and his bank. That is why for us life goes on,” said Edson Gono.
“Evidence of what I’m saying is contained in a letter copied to us by RMB lawyers, Kantor & Immerman, who have reminded Dr Kereke exactly what happened. I wonder why he didn’t he give you those communications between lawyers?”
The letter from Kantor & Immerman to Gasa Nyamadadzawo & Associates, dated April 27, suggests RMB denied the money to Dhobhadhobha was transferred “fraudulently” as alleged because there were “verbal instructions” from one of the bank’s directors, Dunmore Kundishora.
“In subsequent meetings between RMB and Dr Kereke, Dr Kereke acknowledged these instructions and thanked RMB for acting timeously despite the absence of written instructions,” the letter says.
Documents further show the transaction was later reversed and interest accrued paid. “In the circumstances, there has been no loss to Rock Foundation and the claim alleged in your letter of April 13 is denied in its entirety,” the letter says.
At a press conference held at the RMC offices in Mount Pleasant yesterday, Kereke said that he sought, amongst other things, to clear the air on the matter.
“Let me first make the following statements very clearly at the onset. Dr Gideon Gono, Governor of the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe is a thief who stole public funds and private company funds for his own personal gain. Evidence is there to prove this,” he said.
“Please I want to clearly state here that there are attempts by Dr Gono to scare me, by him moving around sending very senior members in government holding ministerial posts saying that ‘Kereke, Gono says don’t pursue this matter because you will be exposing senior people in government who benefitted from him’. Fellow Zimbabweans, for the avoidance of doubt, Dr Gono must know that what I am talking about here has absolutely nothing to do with government. It has nothing to do with any minister. It has nothing to do with any members of the security forces. I am talking about the acts of theft that Dr Gideon Gono committed to benefit his own business interests, including the chicken project he now flaunts as a clean project.”