HARARE – Finance Minister, Professor Mthuli Ncube has disclosed that the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe acquired three loans from Afreximbank since 2017 totalling a massive US$1.4 billion.
The disclosure comes after the High Court ordered Treasury to reveal information on public loans acquired by the government since 2017.
The finance chief revealed that a US$600m loan “for the purchase of strategic commodities” was acquired from the Afreximbank in December 2017.
No further explanation was provided in regards to the meaning of strategic commodities according to the treasury.
Professor Ncube also indicated that a US$500m loan for “strategic commodities and Prospective Currency Reform Programme” was also granted by the Afreximbank in May 2019.
Further, a US$300m loan “for the purchase of strategic commodities” was also granted by the bank in December 2019.
MDC Alliance Vice President Tendai Biti is on the record accusing the Treasury of borrowing without seeking approval from Parliament as is stipulated by the law.
Several calls have been made for the government to be more transparent with regards to the public debt but this seems to have fallen on deaf ears.
It is a worrying trend to a number of progressive citizens considering that it is the members of the public who will repay the loans.
The incompetent Zanu PF government which has come under immense scrutiny for its abuse of public funds claims the money was put to good use.
However some parties have trashed this claim, arguing the funds are being directed towards the interests of certain political elites which justifies the need for transparency.