Sixteen foreign currency dealers yesterday appeared at the Harare Magistrates’ Court charged with contravening sections of the Exchange Control Act after they were allegedly arrested dealing in foreign currency following the recent criminalisation of the practice.
BY DESMOND CHINGARANDE
The accused were exchanging Zimbabwean bond notes with other currencies.
The accused — Abel Sibanda, Faith Muchemwa, Shelly Danda, Kudzanai Mushande, Lovemore Bangwayo, Admire Chikanga, Sibongile Nyahanana, Esseline Siziba, Trymore Tara, Ruth Matenure, Fiona Mapfumo, Joyce Marufu, Catherine Tekwa, Abel Shambare, Alec Mananganzira and Khan Zeyn — appeared before magistrate Nomsa Sabarauta, who remanded them in custody to today for a consolidated bail application.
According to the court papers the complainant in the matter is the State and the allegations are that on October 2 this year detectives were deployed in the Harare central business district under Operation “Dzosai Mari” (return money) to arrest illegal foreign currency dealers.
It is alleged while they were at the corner of First Street and Robert Mugabe Road the detectives arrested Mapfumo who was holding wads of Zimbabwe bond notes and South African rand offering them for sale.
The State further alleges as the operation continued, the police officers rounded up other foreign currency dealers who also had various denominations offering them for sale and the cash was confiscated as exhibit.
It is the State’s case that the suspects had no right to deal in foreign currency without the approval of the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe.
Francisca Mukumbiri appeared for the State.