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BizDay Zimbabwe

RBZ Mum on Zim Dollar Compensation

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HARARE, April 2, 2013 – The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe has no mechanism in place to refund millions of depositors who lost fortunes when the Zimbabwean dollar was abruptly withdrawn from circulation almost four years ago, BizDay has learnt.
The Zimbabwean dollar was discontinued and replaced by a basket of convertible currencies including the Greenback, the Pound Sterling, the South African Rand and the Euro when hyper-inflation eroded its value against major currencies to almost zero by 2009.    Millions of Zimbabweans lost life savings, including pensions, when bank accounts were frozen and the local currency discontinued.
Despite promises from government and RBZ Governor Gideon Gono that those who had honestly earned their savings would be refunded, neither the central bank nor the Ministry of Finance has come up with tangible proposals on how this would be done.
Investigations by BizDay recently revealed that the central bank has no mechanisms – nor policy – in place to refund depositors of the lost fortunes.
A source in the central bank, who preferred anonymity, this week said:  “There are no official structures, measures or policy in place for that (compensation) yet. Also, we are not the ones to frame that policy. You should speak to the Ministry of Finance for further clarity.”
Efforts to get comment from the Ministry at the time of going to press failed.    When Parliament opened this year, Senator Paddy Zhanda said he would move a motion in the House and Senate to have the issue of compensation debated.     This is yet to be done.  – Simbarashe Kunedzimwe/Own Correspondent.

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