By Philippa Robbins|
Zimbabwean dictator Robert Mugabe has rejected calls from Zanu PF officials to extend the term of Reserve Bank (RBZ) governor Gideon Gono, which ended Saturday, it emerged.
Gono’s career came to a crashing end following sensational revelations that the flamboyant banker had sex several times with Mugabe’s wife Grace at her farm in Mazowe and in South African hotels. Gono was also accused by former aides of stealing millions of dollars from the RBZ and of using a fake doctorate obtained from a bogus Nigerian university.
Gono confirmed on Friday that Mugabe had not extended his contract and said he was joining the jobless ranks which he helped to swell through his documented mismanagement of the central bank since 2003.
“I depart a very happy person in terms of discharging the mandate given to me by His Excellency, Cde R.G. Mugabe,” Gono said.
However, experts said Gono had failed to fulfill the primary mission of every central banker, which is to preserve the value of the local currency and keep inflation in check. Under Gono, the Zimdollar collapsed and inflation reached a world record of 231 million percent. An IMF official described him as the world’s worst central banker for the way he disregarded advice and furiously printed money to prop up the regime.
Mugabe renewed Gono’s contract in 2008, despite overwhelming evidence of corruption and mismanagement. It was only in 2010 that Mugabe turned against Gono, after the ageing despot’s dying sister Sabina told him that his wife was having an affair with his trusted banker.
Mugabe could have extended Gono’s term by amending the law, as he has done to accommodate other hangers on, but he refused, sources said.
Gono has become the latest casualty of Grace Mugabe’s alleged numerous sexual escapades. Gono himself told a U.S. diplomat that Mugabe no longer had much interest in having sex with his wife and that he was too old and too sick to satisfy her even if he tried.
Other men whose lives and careers have been wrecked after being seduced by the feisty Grace are:
* Peter “Boss” Pamire, who died in a myterious car crash amid claims he was murdered by Mugabe’s hitmen.
* Businessman and former Telecel Zimbabwe chairman James Makamba, who fled into exile after his reported affair was exposed and he was jailed.
* Mugabe cousin and Pamire’s friend Phillip Chiyangwa, who allegedly ‘took over’ after his friend died.
Apparently, Gono also ran a harem of mistresses, who included RBZ workers Nanette Silukuni, Millicent Mombeshora and the wife of a deputy minister, all of whom were given houses. He also allegedly hit it off with Victoria Ruzvidzo, the business editor of the Herald, who fought with her husband after Gono gave her a car. Ruzvidzo’s sister is married to Stanley Gama, the editor of the Daily News. Sources said this explained an unsigned article in the Daily News on Friday calling on Mugabe to extend Gono’s term. The sources also said Gono used Gama to plant unsavoury stories about his rivals in the Sunday Times of South Africa, where he was a correspondent. Gono is also said to have used the same connection to stop publication of his sex scandal with Grace in Zimbabwe.
By Philippa Robbins|