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Revisit indigenous and economic emancipation – Moyo

Revisit indigenous and economic emancipation – Moyo

Privelage Moyo

Zimbabwe Miners Federation (ZMF) Secretary for Semi-Precious and Gemstones Mr Privalege Moyo has implored that Zimbabwe needs to revisit the Indigenization and economic Act to help communities benefit from their minerals.

Anerudo Mapuranga

According to Moyo, the situation where foreign companies own 100 per cent of mining and agricultural land in the country should be revisited so that the local people benefit from displacements and environmental impacts happening in their areas. He said the minerals have zero attachment to local communities’ growth and development because they are benefiting other nations.

“Chrome is attached to foreigners at zero per cent, it is as good as handing over our minerals to other countries. The registration and taxes are insignificant, that is why many are making a lot of money on stock exchanges. Indigenization needs to incorporate minerals, agriculture, no one should own a farm or a mine without locals. In Dubai, it is being done,” Moyo said.

Chrome Miners Association Chairperson Mr Shelton Lucas said it was of importance for the country to revisit the economic and indigenization blueprint which intended to empower the local people to benefit from minerals.

He said the government is supposed to take the harsh approach taken by the previous dispensation to discourage through the law any foreign companies and individuals for having more than 49 per cent shares in any business.

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“On indigenization, that 51/49 should be adopted since these are finite resources which cannot be replenished and the mines act tributary ratio of 5% to the claim holder should be revisited because it arm-twists local miners in terms of negotiating prowess. The local miners will end up settling for less.”

According to the chairperson for the Parliamentary Committee on Mines and Mining Development Hon Edmond Mkaratigwa, although it is important for communities to benefit from any development or investment happening in their areas of residence, it is of importance if the initiatives go through a rigorous consultation so that those leading could not take community project for personal enrichment.

“My view is that the agency is important for this initiative to succeed but the thinking that should be embedded in whatever choice of agency or the vehicle that should drive the initiative. Councillors and headmen are important in all this because naturally, they are there to facilitate community development, however, they should be bound by a contract that limits human personal ambition and desire for self-enrichment that can easily be visible even where publicly shared resources are concerned. In terms of the amount of share ownership, those are issues that can be arrived at through participatory negotiation between investors, the government, and the communities. Experience has revealed that it is one way to be allocated the resources and another thing to have the resources visibly impactful to all in the community. Whatever arrangement arrived at should offer some kind of flexibility, guarantee for implementation into a future secure from conflicts as a result of such development. Basically, the development should not cause any harm but more benefits,” Mkaratigwa said.

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