Sakunda Holdings, a commodities business which is majority-owned by Zanu-PF benefactor Kudakwashe Tagwirei, is in the cross-hairs of US foreign policy and will soon be added to the sanctions list.
This was revealed by a journalist-turned-government critic, Hopewell Chin’ono, who said it was instructive to note that US Ambassador to Zimbabwe Brian Nichols mentioned Sakunda three times in his recent interview with Trevor Ncube.
Chin’ono accused Sakunda of destroying the Zimbabwean economy to a scale greater than the Guptas’ adverse effects on the South African economy.
“Sakunda was named three times by the American Ambassador, Brian Nichols, in his interview with Trevor Ncube. As a student of history and politics, I can assure Sakunda that it will be on the (US-imposed) sanctions list soon. It (Sakunda) has done more damage to Zimbabwe than the Guptas did to South Africa,” Chin’ono wrote on social media.
Sakunda Holdings has three distinct operating divisions namely Sakunda Energy, Sakunda Trading and Sakunda Logistics.
The company holds a virtual monopoly over fuel distribution in Zimbabwe.
Last month, Sakunda had its bank accounts frozen by instruction from the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe as part of a money-laundering investigation. However, details of the results of the investigation have not been publicized.
Apart from Sakunda the RBZ also made a dramatic swoop on Access Finance, Croco Motors and Spartan Securities following allegations of money laundering.
Spartan is reportedly owned by President Mnangagwa’s nephew Tarisai Mnangagwa.
The central bank’s financial intelligence unit (FIU) had reportedly picked information that the identified companies were pouring in over $1 billion into the parallel market to mop up US dollars.
Some of the money was meant to buy inputs for the government’s controversial command agriculture programme and luxury cars for Cabinet ministers.
Some analysts, however, dismissed the move as the government playing mind games as, despite the investigations, the company remained government’s partner in Command Agriculture programmer and was even involved in distributing inputs the following month using its CBZ bank accounts.
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