The Zimbabwe Mining Federation (ZMF) is concerned that the ongoing attacks on its members by machete wielding criminal gangs could reduce the country’s gold output thereby scuttling the government’s efforts of creating a 12 billion-dollar mining industry by 2023.
Statistics from the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) show that small scale miners are contributing largely to national gold output compared to large scale miners.
“Already we have challenges that are affecting small scale mining operations such as lack of electricity and lower prices but when you have these manmade problems of people deciding to enrich themselves through criminal acts, we get worried,” President of the Zimbabwe Mining Federation, Henrietta Rushwaya said.
Rushwaya urged authorities to move in swiftly to address the problem which if left unsolved may cause not only loss of life but reduce productivity in gold mines.
Machete weilding criminals have wrecked havoc especially in parts of Mashonaland Central committing various crimes such as robberies, theft, assault, rape among others and President Emmerson Mnangagwa is on record saying government is mulling tough penalties for those found in possesion of the dangerous weapons.