The Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (Potraz) and the Ministry of ICTPS have both independently confirmed that they indeed gave $1million to Zifa through a Potraz funded Loan, as they sought to bail out a government arm which was in dire need of the fund.
Critics have questioned the government’s handling of the Universal Service Funds, amidst claims that these were free funds used to advance non telecommunication related projects.
Speaking to the ICT minister, Supa Mandiwanzira, the minister said there was nothing sinister or unwarranted for the Potraz siting funds to bail out other desperate government arm.
This is not the first time we have helped other state departments, in 2012, the then finance minister Tendai Biti was funded $40 million towards national treasury which was advanced as a loan and it was not written off”
He said that the ministry was fully aware of the $1million extended to Zifa by Potraz, beginning of the year, and government in the past has bailed out other various sports as well.
“The ministry is indeed aware that part of the resources have been used to bail out national teams participating in international tournaments, including football, basketball and the recently-held youth games.
“It is not the prerogative of USF to determine how money requested by the government should be utilised. Its responsibility is to ensure that the money is repaid.
The minister however insisted that this was not money given away to the government arms but rather loans given out to them, and subject to be repaid
“None of the money advanced to the government by the USF has been written off, contrary to rumors doing rounds,”
A Potraz source close to the developments insisted that the organization collects revenue for the state and the state holds jurisdiction to loan to other government services deemed critical.