Monday, 26 July 2021

PUBLIC SERVICE COMMISSION SECRETARY IN $150K SOYA BEANS SCAM

 Public Service Commission (PSC) Secretary, Ambassador Jonathan Wutawunashe has been fingered in a scam after he received soya beans inputs worth over $150 000 and failed to plant the seed, TellZim News can report.

Wutawunashe received inputs valued at $156 532 and was expected to deliver the estimated 15 metric tonnes to Grain Marketing Board (GMB) but failed to do so, without any clear explanation.

Wutawunashe was listed together with hundreds of other defaulters in the Sunday Mail edition of July 18, 2021. GMB is threatening legal action against those who allegedly defrauded the company and is also contemplating blacklisting the said defaulters.

Contacted for comment, Ambassador Wutaunashe denied defaulting but acknowledged that he failed to plant due to incessant rains that were experienced last cropping season, which he said were not friendly to soya beans.

“Of course, we were given the seed intending to plant at our farm in Masvingo. When one is given seed under Command Agriculture, you will have to pay for the seed and it is like buying the seed. As you are aware, last season there was excessive rainfall and we were not able to plant the seed. When we failed to plant the seed we notified GMB boss Mutenha,” said Wutawunashe.

Wutawunashe claimed that he still has the inputs and said that he was puzzled when he saw his name on the list, since he had notified Mutenha that he was going to use the inputs in the next cropping season.

“When I got to know that my name was on the list, I called Mutenha clarifying the issue. You can contact Mutenha because he might have made an error by publishing my name on that list since I communicated with him regarding my failure to plant the soya beans. If you communicate with him, he will clarify the issue. It now seems as though we planted the seed, harvested and diverted the produce to another market of which we did not plant at all and the seed is still there at our farm as we were not able to plant so we will wait for the next planting season,” added Wutawunashe.

Contacted for comment, GMB Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Rockie Mutenha said he was busy and referred all questions to their Public Relations manager Nixon Kanyemba. 

“You can contact Kanyemba who is our public relations manager, I’m in Gokwe right now and I am busy,” said Mutenha.

Kanyemba demanded that the questions be sent to his email but when the questions were sent, he denied to comment saying the reporter may fail to come up with a story since there were many stakeholders in the Soya Beans project.

“I can answer your questions but you will fail to come up with any story after all. The production of soya beans is between three major players; government (command agriculture), the financier and GMB as the marketing authority. Some of your questions need to be directed to the other two parties,” said Kanyemba.

Last year, Doctor Rutendo Wutawunashe who is ex-wife to Ambassador Wutawunashe’s elder brother and Family of God founder Andrew Wutawunashe, was also listed on the people who had not paid back the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) farm mechanization programme loans. 

Dr Wutawunashe reportedly received US$18 200 from RBZ but allegedly failed to pay back a single cent. TellZim News

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