- February 8, 2021
- Posted in LOCAL
Small-scale miners have called on the government to descend hard on elements in the mining industry as they disregard the sanctity of life and disrupt mining operations.
By Shantel Chisango
This came as a result of the number of mining accidents in old disused shafts that have continued to surge resulting in the deaths of illegal miners.
Speaking to Mining Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe Miners Federation (ZMF) Mashonaland West regional representative, Ms. Chiedza Chipangura said for the mining industry to thrive the government needs to eliminate criminal elements in the mining industry.
“It is high time government departments unite in wielding out mining cartels who are often at times misconstrued to be small scale miners.”
These mining criminal cartels hinder the mining industry from growing for they circumvent mining laws concurring with law enforcement workers and powerful forces.
“These criminals do not respect mining rights, they are a threat to the mining industry. They work in cohorts with rowdy law enforcement agencies, community leaders, and for some instances ministry of mines personnel.”
Ms. Chipangura further opined that when mining accidents occur due to ignorance and recklessness of the elements, they still expect the government to chip in with taxpayer’s funds knowing that they do not pay any tax fees.
“Such people are not taxpayers and whenever disaster strikes they run to the government for taxpayers’ funds to assist with the retrieval of bodies, and supply of medical needs. It is high time someone is made answerable to such acts,” said Ms. Chipangura.
Zimbabwe has seen a surge in mining shaft collapse related accidents that have claimed a number of artisanal miners. Experts have attributed the deaths to the poor performing economy that is pushing people to take any opportunity available to make ends meet. Many resort to mining in disused shafts and carelessly extract ore from pillars that support the old shafts resulting in their catastrophic end.