We will deal with machete-weilding criminals: Chiwenga

VP Costantine Chiwenga

SMALL scale miners have been urged to regularise their operations and desist from unscrupulous activities that cause leakages of minerals.

Addressing cooperatives and several small and medium scale enterprises (SMEs) in Bindura this Thursday, Vice President Retired General Chiwenga according to State media said the law enforcement agencies will rein in on illegal operators.

Gold is Zimbabwe’s largest foreign currency earner which can sustain the economy when mining firms operate at full capacity.

Leakages caused by illegal miners particularly those who have grown an appetite for terror in areas like Jumbo Mine in Mashonaland Central have weighed down on the sector’s performance.

Chiwenga gave a stern warning to illegal miners to shun chaos and regularise their operations.

“I encourage artisanal miners whom the government has now recognised to rise up to the occasion and form cooperatives to benefit the members who are mostly the youths. We strongly denounce the spirit of individualism and violence perpetrated by machete-wielding criminals that are causing mayhem in mining communities across the country. The police shall enforce law and order without fear or favour,” said Chiwenga.

Zimbabwe Republic Police Assistant Commissioner Operations in Mashonaland Central Province, Assistant Commissioner Mavhuto Maseko said the law enforcement agents are ready to bring order to the mining sector.

“We are now in full force with material and human resources together with the Support Unit clearing out areas such as Jumbo mine to ensure that those breaking the law are arrested,” Assistant Commissioner Mavhuto Maseko said.

The government is targeting to boost the gold mining sector to reach 100 tonnes per annum by 2023.