Zimbabweans know we are entering the season of elections, for always at these times ZanuPF starts digging around for subjects which the majority wants and makes empty promises to deliver to them. This time they are targeting small scale miners popularly known as Amakorokoza. Over the years ZanuPF has been harsh to these poor and desperate citizens who use shovels to dig in search of fortunes from the soil. These small scale miners risk life and limb looking for points of gold which they sell to make a meagre living. Over the years they have been arrested and jailed for up to five years. According to Zimbabwe Miners Federation there are over 2 000 illegal gold miners who are languishing in prison over illegal gold panning.
The Midlands and Matabeleland provinces have long shown their support to the opposition and in a desperate attempt to lure them over the desperate cadres in ZanuPF are appealing to the mineral rich provinces with false and irresponsible promises. It is in these provinces that gold panning is a major source of income to residents.
Seeing this opportunity ZanuPF is using the Indigenisation law. The iniquitous Mines and Mining Development Minister Obert Mpofu, who hails from Matabeleland, claims that gold panning is soon going to be legalised. Mr Mpofu my question is why now?
Justifying his move for the legalisation of gold panning Obert Mpofu said gold panners, have contributed at least 30 percent of the gold delivered to treasury since January this year. What about all the years when gold panners were being arrested? Where they not contributing to the development of the nation then?
But Mr Mpofu another damning question for you: What about the environmental issues associated with illegal gold panning? Have you spoken to the Minister of the Environment about your mad antics?
Gone are the days when people were be fooled by ZanuPF. Zimbabweans hailed their calls in 2000 to invade land, then ordered settlers not to construct permanent structures. To date these resettled farmers do not know what tomorrow holds for them as they do not have title deed of the land they are occupying. Our nation is starving with 1,6 million people in need of food aid, all because we do not produce our own food any more.
Mr Mpofu please, lose some weight, and then maybe you can fit in the holes pockmarking our country, holes desperately made because of unemployment and despair. Wake and smell the coffee, we just don’t believe you any more.