Harare- Small scale miners in Zimbabwe who have lost their mines have accused top ministers of backing machete gangs and disrupting progress, TSTnews has learnt.
By Taurai Bvumo
This was discovered in an investigation carried out by TSTNews in Bindura, Domboshava and Chegutu where violent mine takeovers are currently occurring.
The investigation showed that minister of state security Owen “Mudha” Ncube, Minister of Local Governance July Moyo, Zanu PF Secretary of Administration Obert Mbofu and Deputy Minister for Youth Tinoda Machakaire are involved in the illegal invasions of mines.
In Wedza Tinoda Machakaire is reportedly sponsoring Zanu PF youths who are known for terrorising small scale miners in Manicaland and Mashonaland East.
Machakaire who acquired his wealth and established a name for himself during the days of diamond rush in Chiadzwa is accused of having links with some employees working at the Ministry of Mines, Marondera office.
TSTNews learnt that the deputy minister pays the employees to get a mine certificate cancelled or a court interdict to get someone stopped from mining whilst his team of youths invade the mine during the night.
“TinMak has established himself as the kingpin of mines in Mash East with his home in Wedza as the headquarters where youths are always gathered abusing drugs and those hooligans are used to invade mines on his behalf,” TSTNews was told.
In Mazowe and Midlands minister of State Ncube is reportedly accused of backing illegal miners who are working at Jumbo mine and other small mines regardless of a court order banning such activities in the area.
“The machete gangs are right now mining in Mazowe even though the riot police are manning the entrances. They are given the passage because the gangs are paying Mudha a protection fee,” said another victim of violence in Mazowe.
Minister of Local Governance Moyo is reportedly working with Mudha in Midlands where Moyo is regarded as the Godfather of all Zanu PF politicians.
He has huge influence that makes every judge; politician and police officer in the province respect him.
Victims of violent displacements told TSTNews that Moyo’s word is “command” if he doesn’t get a cheque from you he makes sure that he removes you from that mine.