The permanent secretary of the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development George Guvamatanga will travel to the United Kingdom on a private jet to watch his favourite English Premier League team, Arsenal courtesy of business tycoon Kuda Tagwirei, reported in the Morning Post.
Guvamatanga received the present at a birthday bash held in Harare on Wednesday night.
He also received US$50 000 spending money for sight visits and other luxuries in the UK, the publication further reported.
Presenting the gift at the bash, Tagwirei said he had decided to charter a flight for Guvamatanga and his wife for time-efficiency and quicker check-ins with the purse of US$50 000 covering the impulse expenses of the travel.
The total package of the present is well over US$100 000.
Tagwirei, who is under UK sanctions, is accused of profiting significantly from the misappropriation of property at the expense of wider macroeconomic stability in Zimbabwe
On Wednesday night, the former Barclays Zimbabwe CEO (Guvamatanga), flew in popular South African artists, Makhadzi and Mafikizolo, with Makhadzi to perform at his birthday party.
A report in South Africa’s Movemag magazine at the end of 2014 claimed that Mafikizolo costs nothing less than R80 000 per gig minus flights and other out-of-country essentials. Guvamatanga promised to multiply the figure fivefold. He said:
Whatever was on that bill, because I don’t want to disclose I am multiplying what was on that bill by five.
Tomorrow morning, you give me your bank details, by the time you get to South Africa, that amount by five will be in your account, my brother.
Guvamatanga however, is not without controversy. In April 2020 he approved a controversial US$2 million COVID-19 emergency supplies to a company known as Drax International.
The heavily inflated COVID-19 medical equipment deal did not go tender.
In his defence, he argued that the government did not lose any money as a result of the contract.