George Maponga in Masvingo
Scores of placard-waving villagers in Sese have staged a demonstration demanding an immediate stop to exploration activities by Murowa Diamond Company.
The boisterous villagers, some carrying children on their backs and chanting songs of defiance, want Murowa to leave their area accusing the company for a litany of allegations ranging from overstaying in their area and causing rampant land degradation.
Murowa also stands accused of threatening key infrastructure in Mashamhanda Village where the gem extractor started exploring Thursday around dawn.
Mashamhanda Village head Mr Mujaho Mashamhanda says their livelihoods were now under threat from Murowa whose drilling threatened the nearby Chamakanda dip tank and a dam also going by the same name.
Mr Mashamhanda charged that Murowa was defying villagers’ calls to end their exploration and sit down at the negotiating table to appreciate their concerns.
The demonstrating villagers vowed to press ahead with their action until Murowa leaves their ancestral home and negotiate with them.
Besides drilling exploration holes across Sese another bone of contention between the villagers and Murowa is the latter’s persistant refusal to decamp from Danhamombe High and St Simon Zhara primary schools in the area.
Murowa workers refused to comment when The Herald crew canvassed for a comment from them in Mashamhanda Village where they are drilling.
Murowa has more than 200 mining claims in Sese and has been exploring for diamonds in the area since 2018 to establish whether kimberlites in the area are diamondferous.