BY KENNETH NYANGANI
ZIMBABWE Consolidated Diamond Company (ZCDC) acting chief executive Roberto De Pretto yesterday said he was shocked by the level of poverty and underdevelopment in Chiadzwa despite being endowed with one of the largest diamond deposits in the world.
De Pretto made the remarks during a stakeholders meeting in Mutare which was hosted by the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Mines and Mining Development.
He said almost 15 years after diamonds were discovered in Chiadzwa, the area still had no running water and poor roads while children still walked long distances to school.
“It is disheartening to walk past Chiadzwa, the area is still underdeveloped since 2005 when diamonds were discovered in Marange,” he said.
“It is a shock to me that there is no development despite that Chiadzwa fields have one of the largest diamond deposits in the world, there is no running water, poor roads, while children are walking long distances to go to school,” the ZCDC boss said.
De Pretto called for crafting of a diamond policy with a clear mandate for miners to uplift surrounding communities.
“The diamond policy should be very clear on rehabilitation of areas where diamond companies are operating, companies should be held accountable over land degradation,” he said.
Speaking to NewsDay Weekender, Bocha Diamonds Development Trust board chairperson Lovemore Makwada said: “It’s very unfortunate that these workshops have been held over and over again, coming up with resolutions, but we are still poor in Marange, we are now worried which step we should take to help in the development of Chiadzwa community.”