Prof. Moyo trashes Prof. Mutambara’s title deeds claim

Prof. Arthur Mutambara
Spread the love

‘Mugabe told me: “In not so many words” That he, Grace, Generals and Zanu PF Bigwigs burn currency under Gono with US$10,000 to make US$2 million a week with no work, to buy farms and get title deeds” – Prof. Arthur Mutambara.

By Prof. Jonathan Moyo

The above is a summary of what Prof Arthur Mutambara says in the text below, a verbatim transcription of the attached video clip from his presentation at @citezw’s ‘The Breakfast Club’ last Tuesday. The video clip is currently circulating on social media:

“You know under Gono, let’s assume [NOTE: the fact that Mutambara starts by saying “let’s assume” is the premise of his story on the video clip, which is entirely based on assumptions, not facts] that the official rate is 20, 1 to 20, the parallel is 1 to 200 – those are the numbers – if you start with US$10,000 – US$10,000 – of your own, you go to the parallel market, you buy bondnotes or Zim dollars using parallel rate, you take that and go to Gono; eeh Gono, here I come, I’m General, I’m Grace, I’m Mugabe can you sell me US dollars at the official rate, you buy the US dollars at the official rate, you go back to the market, you buy bondnotes; if you do it three times, you can convert US$10,000 into US$2 million in a week with no work. Ask them. Anyone close to Gono, anyone close to the system could do that. Just starting with US$10,000 you can convert US$2 million by burning. And what do you do with US$2 million? Your pay for your farm. So right now, you think these guys have 99-year leases? They’ve got title. Either you believe in title, or you don’t. So, these guys these women, these men are safe under any regime because they are holding on to title. And Mugabe said that to me in not so many words.

Anyway so, those Bona farms eeh for now we know it’s a fact because it was in the court papers. But guess what, the Second Republic so-called knew about those 21 farms, sure they did. Anyway, in my eeh book I explain all these things”.
@amutambara on @citezw’s ‘The Breakfast Club’ on Tuesday 6 June 2023.

COMMENT:

Prof Mutambara was one of the two deputy prime ministers from the opposition MDC formations along with @DrThoko_Khupe in the 2009 to 2013 GNU. His allegations in question are concerning only for their lack of truth because, as he himself admits upfront in his own words, his narrative is “assumed”, meaning it is based on “assumptions” that are hypothetical in form and anecdotal in content.

In the result, Mutambara tells what is manifestly a false and defamatory story which is gratuitously abusive of the memory and legacy of the late President Robert Mugabe, whom he alleges was the source of his false claims. President Mugabe cannot confirm or deny Mutambara’s shocking fiction from his grave.

Given the fact that Mutambara himself starts by making it clear upfront that his story is “assumed”, there’s actually no need to belabour the point to expose it: it’s a self-exposed naked lie.

But why is Mutambara telling such a blatant lie, and shamelessly peddling it as fact without any qualms about it?

Is it just to sell his book?

Or is it Mutambara’s way of getting into the political fray of the forthcoming harmonised general election?

Prof. Arthur G.O. Mutambara (@amutambara) / Twitter

These questions arise only because Prof Mutambara ought to and should know better.

For example, Mutambara’s currency burning narrative – as per his construction and presentation – cannot withstand even rudimentary scrutiny. He is claiming that “anyone close to Gono, anyone close to the system” could start with US$10,000 to convert it to US$2 million by burning it in three transactions in one week without doing any work, which would have translated to a staggering gain or return of some 19,900% in one week or a currency depreciation of that magnitude.

While there was indeed “currency burning” in the streets between 2007 and 2008 well before the GNU, such claims as Mutambara makes cannot be sustained by assumptions only, without proving anything or giving any facts, save to rely as he does only on fictitious and meaningless examples like “eeh Gono, I’m General, I’m Grace, I’m Mugabe, can you sell me US dollars at the official rate?”.

Mutambara’s examples are nonsense, not facts which would require him to name names and give real verifiable examples of the type of transactions he’s alleging were done.

Another example about which Mutambara ought to know or should know better arises from his assumption that “anyone close to Gono, anyone close to the system” would make US$2 million from “burning” US$10,000 three times a week without doing any work. To tell lie about what used to happen to the alleged US$2 million, Mutambara does not provide any facts, instead he asks and answers his own rhetorical question based on his own assumed and therefore fictitious narrative:

“And what do you do with US$2 million? Your pay for your farm. So right now, you think these guys have 99-year leases? They’ve got title. Either you believe in title, or you don’t. So, these guys these women, these men are safe under any regime because they are holding on to title”.

But, again, who and how many are “these guys, these women, these men” whom Mutambara assumes “bought their farms” allegedly using US$2 million they allegedly made from “burning” US$10,000 three times a week without doing any work?

If Mutambara knows “these guys, these women, these men”, and if he knows for a fact that they bought farms from currency burning and got title deeds without doing any work, why is he vague or blank about their identity and the details of the transactions they did and the title deeds he alleges they got?

On title deeds, Mutambara ought to know the verifiable fact that a significant cross section of individuals from across the political divide bought their farms through various schemes from 1980 to the time the land reform started in the early 2000s, when some white farmers sold their farms before they were acquired, in cases where the state expressed “no present interest”. People like Prof Welshman Ncube bought their farms through such earlier schemes while others – like Dr Gideon Gono who bought his farm in 2001 with a Barclays Bank loan three years before he was appointed RBZ Governor in December 2004 – acquired their farms through bank loans. These are verifiable facts.

Another verifiable fact that Mutambara ought to know is that property transfers are registered public documents, if he is telling the truth about his title deeds story and given that he says his astonishing claims are in his book, he must provide evidence of the transfer records of the farms that he alleges were bought by “these guys, these women, these men”, allegedly using US$2 million they allegedly made from allegedly burning US$10,000 three times a week without doing any work.

The fact that Mutambar has no such evidence is not surprising. As he ought to know, the one thing that white farmers affected by the land reform are clinging onto to this day, for themselves and their offspring, are title deeds, they are using the title deeds to assert their continuing ownership of the farms acquired under the historic land reform programme and to seek and demand full and adequate compensation. The US$3,5 billion compensation deal between government and former white farmers is based on the fact that the white farmers are holding tight to the title deeds.

As such, Mutambara has absolutely no basis to say this:

“So right now, you think these guys have 99-year leases? They’ve got title. Either you believe in title, or you don’t. So, these guys these women, these men are safe under any regime because they are holding on to title”.

The truth is that it’s the former white farmers who are holding on to title, not “these guys, these women, these men” in Mutambara’s assumptions.

Falsely believing that his assumptions establish that “these guys, these women, these men” he does not name, “bought their farms” allegedly using US$2 million they allegedly made from “currency burning” US$10,000 three times a week without doing any work, Mutambara then drags “Bona Mugabe and 21 farms” into his false narrative to push the innuendo that the 21 farms were acquired from alleged proceeds of alleged currency burning; and about this, Mutambara says:

“Anyway so, those Bona farms eeh for now we know it’s a fact because it was in the court papers. But guess what, the Second Republic so-called knew about those 21 farms, sure they did.”

Mutambara ought to know that the fact that the allegation that Bona has 21 farms is in court papers does not necessarily make it true, not least because the allegation has neither been tested in court nor accepted as true by a court of law.

Furthermore, Mutambara ought to know that there’s nothing in the court papers, which says the alleged 21 farms were bought from alleged proceeds of burning US$10,000 three times a week, to gain US$2 million without doing any work, which is what he wants people to think or believe.

It is trite to say he who alleges, must prove. Mutambara does not even try to prove any of his allegations. All he says is that:

“And Mugabe said that to me in not so many words.”

This claim – that his fictitious story was told to him by Mugabe – proves nothing, instead the claim raises a serious question about Mutambara’s balance and sense of proportionality: Is Mutambara, an MDC opposition leader in the 2009 – 2013 GNU – claiming that he was Mugabe’s confidante and right hand man, to whom Mugabe downloaded “secrets”, about how he Mugabe, Grace, Generals and ZanuPF bigwigs allegedly used to burn currency with US$10,000 three times a week to profit US$2 million, without doing any work, which profit they allegedly used to buy land reform farms for which they have title deeds?

Anyone who believes Mutambara’s claims about things Mugabe told him, “Not in so many words,” will believe anything!