Diamond mining firms in Chiadzwa whose licences have expired must cease operations at the Marange fields, legislators heard last week. Mines and Mining Development Deputy Minister Fred Moyo said only those with valid licences should continue extracting diamonds while the consolidation of the firms into one entity is being finalised. Musikavanhu MP Mr Prosper Mutseyami (MDC-T) had asked if there was still diamond extraction in Chiadzwa considering that licences for diamond firms had expired.
“Some mining is taking place for those whose licences are in order,” he said. “For those firms with licences that have expired they should stop mining.” Deputy Minister Moyo did not give names of those firms whose licences had expired. On consolidation of the firms, Deputy Minister Moyo said the respective mines were convening extraordinary meetings to consider the Government directive.
There are seven companies operating in Marange, namely Mbada Diamonds, Anjin, Marange Resources, Gye Nyame, Kusena, Jinan and the Diamond Mining Company. Commercial operations in the Marange area started in 2009.
Meanwhile, Transport and Infrastructural Development Deputy Minister Michael Madanha said it was the prerogative of a parent ministry to terminate contract of board members of a State entity.
He was responding to a question from Bulawayo Central MP Ms Dorcas Sibanda (MDC-T) on why the ministry had fired National Railways of Zimbabwe board chairperson, Mr Alvord Mabhena. “I am not very much aware of the reasons he was fired,” said Deputy Minister Madanha. “What I don’t understand is what is it that is special that he cannot be fired.”
The response triggered a lot of protest from MDC-T legislators who felt that it had tribal connotations. They demanded that he withdrew his statement. The protests took more than 20 minutes as Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly, Cde Marble Chinomona appeared overwhelmed.