George Guvamatanga

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George Guvamatanga

George Guvamatanga is a senior civil servant and the current Permanent Secretary In the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development in Zimbabwe. He is the former Managing Director of Barclays Zimbabwe. He was also the president of the Bankers Association of Zimbabwe (BAZ).

Background

Guvamatanga was born and raised in Kambuzuma where he did both his Primary and Secondary education. For his secondary education he attended Kambuzuma 1 High School.[1]

Career

It was in January 2008 that Guvamatanga was appointed as the Managing Director and Executive Director of Barclays Bank of Zimbabwe Ltd. Guvamatanga was also elected as the president of the Bankers Association of Zimbabwe.[2] Up to 2014, Guvamatanga was said to have had seventeen years of experience in the banking sector.

In November 2017 Guvamatanga resigned as Barclays Bank’s managing director after 28 years of service to the financial institution. It was reported that Guvamatanga had retired from the bank with effect from November 2017 following the successful acquisition of Barclays Bank PLC by FMB Capital Holdings. Samuel Matsekete, the then chief finance officer, was appointed acting managing director Guvamatanga Resigns

In September 2018, Guvamatanga was appointed the permanent secretary in the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development following a restructuring of government ministries by Emmerson Mnangagwa's new administration.

Private aircraft to Victoria Falls

George Guvamatanga private jet

Guvamatanga told the ZBC on Sunday 16 August 2020 that he nearly died from the Coronavirus. Super-rich Ministry of Finance and Economic Development permanent secretary George Guvamatanga has celebrated beating the coronavirus by hiring a private aircraft to fly his family to Victoria Falls. Guvamatanga was hospitalised for over three weeks after going down with the respiratory illness, which also spread to his wife, young children and household staff.

Videos circulating showed Guvamatanga and his family being driven into the Robert Gabriel Mugabe International Airport on Saturday 15 August 2020 where a Beech 300 Super King Air 350 aircraft was on standby to fly the family to the tourist resort which re-opened last week after months of coronavirus-imposed restrictions. The aircraft is registered to National Airways Corporation of South Africa.[3] Guvamatanga did not travel, however, although he momentarily went into the aircraft to ensure his family was comfortable.

Guvamatanga – the government’s paymaster – has been in the eye of a storm after approving dubious payments running into millions of dollars to Drax International LLC, a company linked to President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s twin sons Collins Mnangagwa and Shaun. The company was awarded tenders worth over US$60 million to supply drugs and medical devices to the health ministry without going to tender.

Obadiah Moyo was arrested and sacked as health minister over the scandal exposed by ZimLive. Four executives of the state-owned drugs firm NatPharm were also arrested, but no action was taken against Guvamatanga who maintains that the task of doing due diligence on suppliers fell on the health ministry.

Guvamatanga earlier this year reportedly paid US$50,000 cash for a kitchen suite – although like all Zimbabwean public servants he is paid in the worthless local currency.

Doctors and nurses are on strike at public hospitals where most Zimbabweans end up if they develop complications from the coronavirus – but Guvamatanga had no such problems after being treated at the Rock Foundation Medical Centre in Mt Pleasant which was recently acquired by the controversial petroleum tycoon Kudakwashe Tagwirei.

The facility, formerly owned by jailed child rapist Munyaradzi Kereke, was renovated to the tune of US$3 million and is reserved for the ruling political and military elites.

References

  1. Margaret Chinowaita, Barclays MD donates to former school, DailyNews, Published: October 16, 2013, Retrieved: July 11, 2014
  2. ‘BAZ committed to Zim’s development’, The Herald, Published: June 6, 2012, Retrieved: July 11, 2014
  3. [1], ZimLive, Published: 16 August, 2020, Accessed: 18 August, 2020