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We were sold dummy, says ex-Zipra cadres

by Staff reporter
23 Jan 2021 at 22:36hrs | Views
FORMER Zipra ex combatants have complained that government has not honoured its promise to give them shareholding in the Gwayi based China-Africa Sunlight Energy coal mine project.

The Matabeleland North company is a joint venture between the Defence and War Veterans Affairs ministry's Oldstone Investments and a Chinese company, Sha Don Sunlight Energy Investments.

The late former president Robert Mugabe, in a speech read on his behalf by his successor and then Defence minister, Emmerson Mnangagwa, pledged the shareholding to the ex-Zipra cadres during the ground breaking ceremony for the project in 2012.

But on Wednesday Zipra War Veterans Association spokesperson Buster Magwizi told Southern Eye on Sunday that nothing had materialised nine years later.

"We made a follow-up, but discovered that it was a mere talk show because there were supposed to be some laws enacted to govern the whole project,'' said Magwizi.

He said the exZipra cadres have also not been informed of the outcome of exploration activities in the area.

But Chief Vusumuzi Khumalo Mabhikwa, in whose area the project falls under, said the local community was set to benefit immensely from the project through a 10% special grant, employment and corporate social responsibility programme by the company.

"Even education-wise, parents are going to encourage their children to go to institutions like the Zimbabwe School of Mines so that they can get employment," said the traditional leader.

In 2007, the government declared the exploration of gas in Lupane a national project and announced several deadlines for the full exploitation of the resource, but nothing on the ground has taken place over a decade later.

Source - the standard