2 March 2016

Zimbabwe: MDC Demands Satisfactory Answers From Mugabe Over Diamonds Mining Revenue

Photo: Denford Magora
Marange Diamond Fields

THE MDC party is demanding satisfactory answers from government on the operations and circumstances that led to the closure of the Marange diamond mines last week.

The MDC said mines Minister, Walter Chidhakwa, and President Robert Mugabe must explain the closure of diamond mines in Marange by publishing comprehensive figures to prove their innocence and for the purposes of transparency.

MDC's demands come after government last month gave all mining companies at Chiadzwa and Chimanimani 90 days to move their equipment.

The government said it had consolidated diamond mining companies into one entity named the Zimbabwe Consolidated Diamond Company to "improve efficiency and accountability".

However, MDC spokesperson, Kurauone Chihwayi, said the abrupt closure of diamond mines in the absence of a valid explanation and an audit report detailing the quantities and amounts raised from the private sale of the country's gems was questionable.

"It is illogical for a government to close down mines and throw people into the streets without a convincing explanation.

"The MDC is raising the red flag to draw public attention to the evil and inadequate reasons given by government officers around the closure of diamond mines in Zimbabwe.

"We are very much disturbed by the lack of transparency and accountability in the administration of natural resources by the Zanu PF government which has a bad tendency of prevaricating when caught engaging in criminal activities," said Chihwayi.

He added that his party remains committed to the creation of a devolved state where power would unlocked and spread down to communities.

"Failure by the Robert Mugabe regime to improve infrastructure and provide the much needed social services in Marange area is a clear sign of failure and poor governance," he said.

The closure of Chiadzwa mines has left the poor poorer, stark with contaminated water, dilapidated infrastructure and jobless families.

"Our concern as the MDC is the abuse of revenue generated from the gems and gross lack of transparency and accountability in the mining and selling of Marange diamonds."

Activists and the opposition accuse the Zanu PF government of channelling resources towards the elite and its internal political fights.

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