Murowa in the eye of storm in Chivi

31 Dec, 2021 - 15:12 0 Views
Murowa in the eye of storm in Chivi Chivi Ward 20 Councillor Aleck Nhundu(foreground) and Chamakanda Dip Tank chairperson Mr Builder Tavagadza(right) assessing damage on the dip tank that is blamed on drilling activities by Murowa Diamond Company.

The Herald

George Maponga in Masvingo
It never rains but pours for one of the country’s diamond miners, Murowa Diamond Company as villagers in the Sese area of Chivi are threatening to sue the company for damaging infrastructure while exploring for gems in their ancestral land.

Villagers are angry with Murowa accusing the miner of being behind the structural damage of Chamakanda dip dam and dip tank a situation they say is now affecting their livelihoods.

Murowa a few months ago drilled near the dam and dip tank as part of its exploration work in the village and villagers allege the vibration caused by the drilling led to faults that affected Chamakanda dam and dip tank foundations resulting in massive leakages.

Chairperson of Chamakanda Dip Tank committee Mr Builder Tavagadza says the facility is in urgent need of repairs as it can no longer impound water due to underground leaks which villagers suspect were caused by Murowa drilling activities.

He says out of 1 200 cattle from 11 villages across Ward 20 only half of them can now be dipped at Chamakanda because of massive leaking which was also causing loss of dipping chemical.

At least 10 cattle have broken their limbs after being forced into the shallow dip tank.

Sese Community Trust spokesperson Mr Musiiwa Musiiwa says Murowa should repair the damages at the two facilities or risk legal action from them.

Mr Musiiwa said leakages at the dam and dip tank only started after Murowa had started drilling for diamond samples in Mashamhanda village.

He disclosed that because of the damage to the dip tank cattle in Ward 20 were only now dipping once a month exposing them to pestilences like January disease.

Small holder irrigation farmers reliant on Chamakanda Dam also faced a bleak future.

Ward 20 Councillor Mr Alec Nhundu says Murowa should immediately engage Sese villagers for the parties to agree on the way forward adding the gem miner should help fix the damages if it is behind the faults.

Murowa Vice President responsible for Human Resources and Administration Mr Islam Chipanga said he had nothing to say at the moment as he is currently on holiday.

“I have no comment on that,I have not heard anything like that and we will have to investigate but at the moment I have no comment I can’t say anything on that I have no information to that effect,” said Mr Chipango.

Chamakanda dip tank was commissioned in 2007 after Sese villagers built it using their own resources.

Murowa has been at loggerheads with Sese villagers over its exploration work in the area with the latter accusing the former of failing to engage them for a harmonious working relationship.

Villagers at one time took Murowa to court to force the miner to decamp from a local school while also demanding that it leaves their homeland because its heavy duty exploration equipment was damaging roads.

The matter is pending at the Supreme Court.

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