PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa on Saturday told the ruling Zanu-PFMidlands Provincial Coordinating Committee (PCC) members in Gweru that the county’s economic challenges were largely a result of corruption involving the use of EcoCash balances by agents and the leading mobile money transfer platform owned by Strive Masiyiwa’s Econet Wireless.
President Mnangagwa added that the Second Republic has managed to tame the runaway inflation which was being caused by fictitious mobile money created mostly through Ecocash.
“We realised that Ecocash was behind all this so we studied this thing and got to their server and found everything, every corruption and takatora tsvimbo ndokurova, it was painful to others but we said we only allow limited mobile money and it must reflect in the account,” said President Mnangagwa.
He said this was the reason why Government introduced auctions, the “one for SMEs and another for big sharks”.
“We were all confused as to what was happening until we set up a committee and we discovered there was up to $8,4 billion circulating outside the banking system, which money in financial terms, is phantom money, which is some sort of ghost money whose source no one knows,” said President Mnangagwa.
Phantom income, sometimes referred to as phantom revenue, is typically an investment gain that has not yet been realised through a cash sale or a distribution.
“We also discovered that there were people on the streets, a lodger who does not own a house but in his or her mobile phone there is $86 million, which he or she is trading, not employed, no one complaining of losing money, it was confusing,” he said.
President Mnangagwa said the Second Republic was also worried with the level of corruption, especially in local authorities. He said his administration will leave no stone unturned to eradicate corruption.
Still on the economy, the President said the gaping budget deficit would have been tamed by 2023.
“For years this country has never balanced its budget. 96% of the budget was used for salaries with only 6 % going torwards developmental projects.
“Within 2 years we have eliminated budget deficit down to 4%. Now 50% is going to salaries and 50% going to development projects.” – Zimbabwe Voice / Sunday Mail