Daniel Chigunwe Herald Correspondent
Villagers under Chief Kazunga (Ward 19) in Guruve breathed a sigh of relief from their perennial water challenges after the successful implementation of a solar powered borehole system under an initiative launched by a local chrome mining company.
The unveiling of the borehole scheme is the first in the Guruve-Muzarabani area where Alaska Chrome Mine is set to drill more boreholes as an effort to complement the Presidential Borehole Drilling Scheme launched by President Emmerson Mnangagwa.
Speaking during the commissioning of the borehole last week, Zanu Pf Politburo member Retired Brigadier General Epmarcus Kanhanga called on mining investors in the area to replicate the borehole drilling scheme.
“Water scarcity issues are rife in Guruve and surrounding areas like Muzarabani and Mbire. As such, several projects to uplift the villagers have been hampered in the past years.
“It is not every day that we see private players mining around here remembering the community in a way like this. It resonates well with our President’s mantra of leaving no place and no one behind,” said Rtd Brig-Gen Kanhanga.
Alaska, which currently employs 200 people in Guruve, is set to drill four more boreholes by end of year with the director Mr Kudakwashe Zvinokona saying the mine is also ready to assist Government with the free internet for rural schools.
The mine has an average output of 10 000 tonnes of chrome ore per month in the Muzarabani area.
“We are going to drill four more boreholes in this remaining part of the year. We have since spoken with the chiefs to identify worst affected areas. In Kazunga, we noticed that people had to walk more than 3km to fetch water from the only bush pump borehole around.
Meanwhile, the Zimbabwe Miners Federation national secretary for chrome Mr Shepherd Madzingira implored local stakeholders to harmonise relations for accelerated development growth.
“We know Alaska as a major player in the chrome business and as such, we call for stakeholders especially those involved with rural district councils, safari players, national heritage and monuments, parks and wildlife as well as local political leadership to find common grounds in whatever challenge that may affect mining activities,” he said.
“We have 23 villages in this ward with the main source of water being the rivers which are dry during the hot season. We believe more projects of this sort might aid the growth of gardening projects in this area. This also ensures our livestock has better water provision,” said a villager Mr Ngonidzashe Chaora.