At least 60kg of gold worth millions of dollars could be smuggled from Zimbabwe to Dubai monthly, prejudicing the country of the much-needed foreign currency earnings, Prosecutor-General Mr Kumbirai Hodzi estimates.
In an interview, Mr Hodzi said an inter-agency comprising of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) and law enforcement agents was working round-the-clock to end smuggling.
“I was in Dubai recently and the officials there were telling us that a total of 60kg of gold every month comes from Zimbabwe and we have to put together a team of investigators to establish where the gold is coming from,” he said.
Mr Hodzi said Government has allocated them funds to conduct proper training for investigators, as the gold was being smuggled in a smart way by a highly-sophisticated network of cartels.
“Finance and Economic Development Permanent Secretary Mr George Guvamatanga has given resources to the inter-agencies to train our investigators, prosecutors, police officers and those in specialised fields,” he said.
“We need to train investigators properly because there is also plenty of smuggling into South Africa and other countries.”
Mr Hodzi said on Friday four prosecutors left for India to take up forensic studies and another 12 were supposed to go to Italy, but their trip was suspended due to Covid-19.
He took a swipe at land barons who are illegally acquiring land and selling it to unsuspecting homeseekers.
Mr Hodzi said land barons’ days were numbered as prosecution was inevitable.
“There has been plenty of corruption as far as allocation of land, be it State land or local authority land,” he said.
“There has been lawlessness also in that sector.
“That is why we have all sorts of illegal settlements sprouting and land barons building on wetlands and land meant for other developments. That must stop.”