by Wisdom Mumera
Complaints that ZANU PF is harbouring various crooks and criminals have been bolstered again after revelations that prospective Mazowe North candidate Campion Takura Mugwenhi is a convicted criminal previously implicated in a $2 million fraud scandal in the US.
The revelations, contained in a US Department of Justice file state that Mugwenhi was arrested in 2007 after being implicated in a conspiracy to defraud the government by creating and filing fraudulent tax returns.
He was caught and sentenced to 66 months in prison and ordered to restitute the government of $1,965,637 with an order to deport him after the sentence.
"In addition as part of government’s agreement with Mugwenhi he must forfeit the more than $40 000 in funds seized during an execution of a search warrant in April and funds IRS-CI seized from his bank accounts . In addition the Government has begun legal proceedings seeking the forfeiture of Mugwenhi’s 2005 Hummer H2 vehicle and his 2006 Land Rover Range Rover vehicle” says the file.
According to the factual resume filed in the case Mugwenhi agreed that from October 2006 until April 2007 he schemed with others to prepare and electronically file fraudulent income tax returns by using personal identification information without authorization , they then used those fraudulent tax returns , which showed that refunds were owed to the taxpayers, as a basis for obtaining fraudulent refund anticipation loans from banks added the State Department.
Zanu PF UK Chairperson Nick Mangwana also expressed disapproval at the happenings in the party. “I think this is a wake up call for my party. We need to tighten our rules and have some kind of fit proper person Test. This tick-a- box dimension political history criteria is clearly not enough. We need to cleanse our politics. Miscreants are coming to hide in there,” he said.
The issue of shady characters seeking to compete on Zanu PF tickets has been gaining momentum as the numbers keep increasing. Besides Mugwenhi former ENG Asset Management company director Gilbert Muponda implicated in another shady case of financial mismanagement scandal back in 2004 before fleeing to the UK is also seeking to run in the 2018 elections.
Ozias Bvute, current CEO for Metbank has also thrown his hat into the ring despite past incriminations in a cricket scandal at Zimbabwe Cricket.
Other such shady characters to have expressed ambition to contest also include James Makamba already in a wrangle for Telecel with Minister Supa Mandiwanzira whilst a leaked audio about bribes is also doing rounds. Norton Member of Parliament Temba Mliswa is only on record saying Zanu PF risked becoming a home for criminals.
by Wisdom Mumera