UPDATED: President Mnangagwa re-launches mining operations in Chiadzwa

By ZBC Reporter

PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa says his government is looking beyond mining diamonds to research, polishing and cutting of the mineral to achieve a 12-billion-dollar industry by the year 2023.

Speaking during the re-launch of Anjin investments in Chiadzwa this Saturday, President Mnangagwa said the Minister of State for Manicaland Province, Dr Ellen Gwaradzimba has since forwarded plans for the establishment of a centre in Mutare where diamonds will be processed, polished and cut for export.

Cde Mnangagwa also said the re-launch of the company will benefit the mining industry as Anjin has vast experience in the diamond mining industry.

He said before the company’s closure in 2016, it used to contribute close to 200 million us dollars to the country’s Gross Domestic Product.

The President added that the local mining industry should not only produce enough for the local market but also aim for the export market through capacitating the Zimbabwe Consolidated Diamond Company.

“I am informed that there is a place in India where there is no diamond mine, but they have a US$5 billion diamond industry. I’m told Zimbabwe contributes a lot of diamonds there. I don’t know how those diamonds get there.

“We need that value addition done here in Zimbabwe, not elsewhere so that we extract the maximum value of the minerals which we have. With unity of purpose, hard, honest work and greater determination, the realisation of the US$12 billion mining economy and the attainment of our national vision 2030 will soon become a reality.”

He also spoke on corruption saying those found on the wrong side of the law should be brought to book despite their social, financial or political status.

Anjin has so far invested US$38 million to resuscitate operations and will soon employ about 500 people.

President Mnangagwa implored the company and other firms operating in Chiadzwa to prioritise the employment of locals, especially women and youths.

“I urge Anjin and other companies here to ensure that women and youths are the largest beneficiaries of employment opportunities being created. I urge mining firms to undertake relevant responsive corporate social responsibility programmes for the benefit of local communities,” said the President.

The commissioning ceremony was attended by Vice President Dr Constantino Chiwenga, Mines and Mining Development Minister Winston Chitando, Defence and War Veterans Affairs Minister Oppah Muchinguri-Kashiri, Finance and Economic Development Minister Mthuli Ncube and Minister of State for Manicaland Provincial Affairs and Devolution Ellen Gwaradzimba.

Yesterday’s visit to Manicaland was the President’s last stop in an economic projects tour which began in Victoria Falls on Thursday where he officially launched the National Tourism Recovery and Growth Strategy.

The President led the restart of the sector, whose contribution to the national economy has been heavily crippled by the outbreak of Covid-19.

Earlier on President Mnangagwa had toured tourism facilities in the resort town before commissioning the 19-suite luxurious Mbano Manor Hotel, which was built using local funding.

He also visited the massive 146-room Palm Lodge facility, which is still under construction and is estimated to cost close to US$24 million.

On Friday, the President commissioned a 32,2km stretch of the Harare-Masvingo-Beitbridge Highway under Phase One of the rehabilitation, upgrading and widening project. The work is being done by local contractors. The President had a stopover in Chivhu where Fossil Contracting has completed a 9km of which 7,2km has been opened for traffic, while Masimba Construction, Exodus and Company, and Tensor Systems are at priming stage and will start surfacing this month.