BY VANESSA GUZHA
MINES minister Winston Chitando is embroiled in a mine wrangle after he allegedly cancelled a mining permit for an indigenous miner and controversially awarded it to a syndicate allegedly linked to his permanent secretary, Onesimo Moyo.
Indigenous miner, Pius Madzimure, who has been operating the mine for nine years, was allegedly ordered to vacate the claim this week by Chitando to make way for a mining syndicate called Marongoro, which is fronted by Mary Moyo and Eunice Madyangowe.
This is despite a ruling by Mashonaland Central provincial mining director, one M Mazemo in 2021 that Madzimure is the rightful owner of the claim.
“After all necessary considerations have been done, it is hereby determined that Elliot 90, registered in favour of Mr P Madzimure, has no overlap with either special grant 7290 or special grant 7235 and, as such, should continue with his mining operations within the boundaries of his block of mining claims as at registration,” part of the report by Mazemo read.
But Chitando this week controversially overturned the ruling and ordered that Marongoro takes over the claim, although, according to documentation, it was not part of the dispute which was being dealt with by the minister.
After the provincial mine director had upheld Madzimure’s right to mine at Elliot 90 against Justice Mining Syndicate and Maisva 3 Mining Syndicate, the dispute then escalated to the minister.
The provincial mines director ruled that Maisva 3 Mining Syndicate should be allocated a claim adjacent to Madzimure’s claims, while Justice Mining Syndicate lost the right to mine in the area.
But Chitando overturned the decision of the provincial director and went on to direct that Madzimure be evicted to make way for Marongoro, whose directors are the same as those for Justice Mining Syndicate.
“In this instance, the determination is: Pius Madzimure registered his claim Elliot 90A on the area which was not open to prospecting and pegging, therefore, it should be cancelled,” Chitando directed.
Documents state that Marongoro Mining Syndicate was not included in the claim dispute when the issue was heard by the provincial mining director. It only surfaced after Chitando’s directive.
The minister was unavailable for comment yesterday.
The mine dispute started during the late former President Robert Mugabe’s era. Madzimure fought a successful legal battle against former First Lady Grace Mugabe.
Madzimure has since taken the matter to the High Court challenging the minister’s ruling.