Minister of Mines and Mining Development Winston Chitando’s $12 billion economy seems thretened following reports scores of placard-waving villagers in Sese staged a demonstration demanding an immediate stop to exploration activities by Murowa Diamond Company.
In a recent interview with TechnoMag, Minister chitando emphasized that the 12 billion dollar economy is premised on major minerals which include diamond.
The boisterous villagers, some carrying children on their backs and chanting songs of defiance, want Murowa to leave their area accusing the company for a litany of allegations ranging from overstaying in their area and causing rampant land degradation.What it basically means is the ministry responsible and Murowa have not done enough homework to get things in motion and start producing to the benefit of both the villagers, community, country and the company.
Minister Chitando said it pot and clara to TechnoMag that
”then we also then have diamonds …were we also have four players being ZCDC, ANJIN, ALROSA WHICH IS COMING INTO PLAY and they have projects in MALIPATI near Beitbridge and in Tsholotsho and one or two other sites which they are moving into..then we have Murowa diamonds who are undertaking a USD$ 450 million dollars expansion project over and above that on the diamond sector we are also looking at the increased beneficiation of the diamonds.”
Inspite of this Murowa also stands accused of threatening key infrastructure in Mashamhanda Village where the gem extractor started exploring Thursday around dawn.
Mashamhanda Village head Mr Mujaho Mashamhanda says their livelihoods were now under threat from Murowa whose drilling threatened the nearby Chamakanda dip tank and a dam also going by the same name.
Mr Mashamhanda charged that Murowa was defying villagers’ calls to end their exploration and sit down at the negotiating table to appreciate their concerns.
The demonstrating villagers vowed to press ahead with their action until Murowa leaves their ancestral home and negotiate with them.
Besides drilling exploration holes across Sese another bone of contention between the villagers and Murowa is the latter’s persistant refusal to decamp from Danhamombe High and St Simon Zhara primary schools in the area.
Murowa workers in Mashamhanda Village where they are drilling are not mincing their words.It boggles the mind especially considering the Minister stated,
Murowa is ”undertaking a USD$ 450 million dollars expansion project”
Murowa has more than 200 mining claims in Sese and has been exploring for diamonds in the area since 2018 to establish whether kimberlites in the area are diamondferous.