Last year an international outcry led Nestle to stop buying milk from Mugabe’s wife, Grace but Indigenisation Minister, Saviour Kasukuwere and Minister of State Didymus Mutasa threatened the company’s chairman, Kumbirai Katsande with unspecified action if he did not resuscitate the deal.
According to cables released by whistleblower website, Katsande was explaining to US ambassador to Zimbabwe, Charles Ray the difficulties of conducting business in Zimbabwe.
At the time, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe froze all Nestle accounts, advising them that these would only be reactivated if Nestle started buying milk from Mugabe’s wife.
Central bank chief, Gideon Gono said he was acting on behalf of the president and Katsande approached Mugabe, who directed him to the Industry and Trade Minister, Welshman Ncube.
Activists had raised concern that Nestle was buying milk from Gushungo Farm, which the first family seized from white owners.