In southern Africa, an investigation initiated by the government of Botswana for the suspicions around a series of large payments made to legislator Samson Guma Moyo, has taken a new turn.
The State is in the process of investigating Moyo for receiving a series of funds amounting to $10 million from Zimbabwe’s $533 million Kariba South power extension project, the Zimbabwe Independent reported.
The Botswana Unified Revenue Service (Burs) has recently launched its own investigation into this matter.
Moyo claims that the funds in question are owed to a construction, consultancy and transport contract awarded to Chinese state-owned Sinohydro Corporation, through his company IRB Transport.
Revenue service seizes classified documents
Burs believes that Moyo has been avoiding tax through his cross-border business transactions, which has resulted in the revenue service seizing Moyo’s documents, computers and laptops.
According to media, in addition to Moyo’s companies having had all documents and computers seized, Burs has demanded that all clients be disclosed.
Moyo told Botswana’s Sunday Standard newspaper, that there was nothing unprecedented about the latest investigation.
“I was not at my businesses’ premises, but they informed me that they were visiting my offices to conduct an audit of my businesses. They met my staff and we allowed them to do their job freely.
“It’s normal. They have done it before. If they check on your returns, they have the right to come to your offices. Anybody who is in business attracts the attention of the taxman; there is money accruing and if there is any amount due you have to reconcile and pay. You can’t circumvent the law.
He added: “… If there is something that I owe, I will make an arrangement and pay.”
Moyo: Investigated suspicions
Sinohydro, which won the tender to carry out the power extension project in 2012, contacted IRB for the construction of the project, according to Moyo.
Botswana Youth Minister, Thapelo Olopeng, and Moyo’s business partner, is also implicated in these dealings and is under investigation.
According to the Zimbabwe Independent, Botswana’s Directorate on Corruption and Economic Crime, which is investigating Moyo, claims that the legislator has not provided sufficient information to justify the large payments.