Fuel tanker driver arrested with 39k litres of water

MATTHEW TAKAONA

MIRROR REPORTER

CHIRUNDU – A fuel tanker driver, Abraham Mutakwa (42) was arrested last week on Monday after he attempted to cross Chirundu Border Post with 39 000 litres of water disguised as diesel.

Mutakwa was arrested together with Anway Ndalema (31), a Zimra sealing officer who allegedly facilitated the scam.

Sources told The Mirror that such rackets have become rampant and it is the powerful politicians and business people who are behind the scams. This particular incident prejudiced Government of US$20 396,36 in duty.

Documents seen by The Mirror show that Mutakwa who was driving the tanker (Reg number ACE 2957) owned by Cognitech Investments of Chitungwiza later revealed that he has been smuggling fuel for a long time assisted by Ndalema.

Ndalema received US$2 600 for his effort and the truck was seized by the State, according to Police documents. The State recovered US$1 900 from Ndalema.

National Police Spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said he is yet to get a report from Chirundu Police over the matter. 

Sources told The Mirror that truckers are diverting fuel from Mozambique and South Africa destined for Zambia and offloading it in Zimbabwe where it fetches more money on the market.  Diesel for example in Zimbabwe costs US$1,40 per litre. After offloading the fuel, they then proceed to Zambia with tankers filled with water to enable them to cross the border.

Once in Zambia they fill up their tanks by buying fuel from local fuel stations where it is cheaper and then proceed to deliver to their actual destinations in Zambia. They make massive profits by selling fuel in Zimbabwe which is duty free.

The Police papers say that a Freightliner Columbia truck registration number ACE 2957 driven by Mutakwa was dispatched at Forbes border post with 39 660l of diesel destined for Sahara Energy PVT Ltd Lusaka, Zambia.

As the truck arrived at Chirundu One Stop Border Post and proceeded to ZIMRA desk on the Zambian side for acquittal, the driver was ordered to go back to the Zimbabwean side for a physical inspection to be carried on the truck.

ZIMRA official Evelyn Lydia Kudzunga inspected the truck and discovered that it was loaded with 39 000 litres of water.

Police later interviewed Mutakwa who implicated Ndalema.https://masvingomirror.com

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