Commercial Farmers' Union of Zimbabwe

Commercial Farmers' Union of Zimbabwe

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BEE law: ‘Failure to comply will lead to sanctions’

BEE law: ‘Failure to comply will lead to sanctions’

Friday, 20 May 2011 10:16

By Nqobile Bhebhe

YOUTH Development, Indigenisation and Empowerment minister Saviour 
Kasukuwere said the government would not hesitate to impose punitive 
measures against foreign-owned firms which failed to meet the deadline to 
comply with the controversial empowerment law.

Kasukuwere revealed that non-compliant firms would be banned from exporting 
their produce.

“Firms that fail to comply by deadline day will have sanctions imposed on 
them by barring them from exporting their produce,” said Kasukuwere.

He said this while addressing captains of industry in Bulawayo on Wednesday.

To enforce the sanctions, Kasukuwere said an instrument would be gazetted 
with names of the affected companies effectively withdrawing their operating 

With foreign-owned mining companies compelled to cede 51% of their stake to 
Kasukuwere said focus would now shift to the manufacturing, banking and 
tourism sectors.

“We are now coming up with the manufacturing implementation framework which 
will be different from the mining framework as it has its own special 
characters,” he said.

He said the sector would be given a three-year time lag to comply.

Kasukuwere said the government was not against foreign investment in 
Zimbabwe but against “foreign arrogance”.

He said some foreign firms expected him to do “a jambanja” (violent 
takeover) so as to attract international press, but I won’t do that as the 
law is on our side”.

Most mines have adopted a wait and see attitude and are putting expansion 
plans on hold until there was clarity on how the empowerment plan would be 

Although some foreign-owned mining firms have submitted their proposals on 
how they planned to sell a majority stake to locals, Kasukuwere did not 
reveal government’s position on the proposals.

The proposed empowerment programme has been attacked by several lawyers who 
say it is illegal.

Prominent lawyer and former president of the Law Society of Zimbabwe 
Sternford Moyo dismissed the Indigenisation Act saying it focused on 
directors and company secretaries and required them to put forward 
indigenisation plans when in actual effect they were not the owners of the 

Moyo said: “Company directors and secretaries do not own the property which 
you are saying they should relinquish. The state entities which are set to 
be created by the Act will suffer losses like what the parastatals are doing 
and the government later decided to privatise them. The state will end up 
having accumulation of entities and will run them down just like what they 
did in other areas. We need to create new opportunities for business and not 
destroy what has already been built. How can you build a house by taking 
bricks from another house which has already been built?”

However, Kasukuwere last week laughed off these claims saying government was 
determined to pursue the policy to its end while engaging its lawyers.

“We are not nationalising anything but only seeding value. The 
Indigenisation Act was not going to be necessary if these companies had 
complied with us for the sake of our people, but they did not do anything 
and now that we are indigenising, they are saying we are wrong,” said 


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