Ministry of Finance warns of fake US$500K entrepreneur fund

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Minister of finance Mthuli Ncube, budget surplus 2021 Q1, fake email US$500K entrepreneurs

The Ministry of Finance has warned the public of a fake email that has been circulating inviting local entrepreneurs to apply for financial aid as part of a COVID -19 recovery program.

The statement from the Ministry of Finance reads as follows:

The Ministry of Finance and Economic Development has noted with grave concern, some messages which are circulating on social media, inviting entrepreneurs to submit applications for financial aid as part of the economic recovery programme in the wake of COVID 19. The messages allege that the Department of Local Economic Development has partnered with the International Economic Development Council and Africa Investment Forum to provide financial grants for citizen-owned businesses. Further, the messages cite a non-existent Economic Empowerment Act No.9 of 2020 and SI 36 of 2019, which talks about Financial Services Authority (Regulatory Sandbox Exemption).

The address used on the adverts suggest a connection with the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development. The public is advised that the Ministry does not have a Department of Local Economic Development and the cited individuals are not Ministry officials.
The messages are hereby declared FALSE and should be regarded with the contempt deserved.

To avoid loss of private information as well as actual and potential financial loss, the Ministry urges the public to ignore any malicious messages and in particular to check the authenticity of any information propagated on social media before sharing personal details. In order to bring the perpetrators to book, appropriate actions to determine the origins of the messages is being pursued through the relevant law enforcement agencies.

Ministry of Finance on Twitter

The email that the Ministry of Finance flagged reads as follows:

If you receive an email of this nature the best course of action is to call the organisation that is supposedly being offering the opportunity or offer. In most cases scammers want you to harvest your personal information.

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Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube said that the government had a budget surplus of ZWL$9.8 billion in Q1 2021. Now, that’s just over US$100 million (by the RBZ auction rate) and that’s a lot of money. So we discussed what a budget surplus is, if it is a good or bad thing in the Zimbabwean context, and how the government could possibly use all that money.

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