At a meeting between traditional leaders (chiefs) and Kuvimba recently in Zvishavane, Kuvimba officials insinuated that there will be “chaotic mining of lithium if claims are accorded to the chiefs.”
This assertion must be dismissed with the greatest contempt it deserves and is not only an insult to traditional leaders and people from Mberengwa, but also tailor-made to keep the people of Mberengwa constantly fed on a diet of starvation, poverty, underdevelopment of development, and development of underdevelopment.
As one mining guru from Mberengwa put it “there are credible frameworks that can be applied to manage the mining of lithium with the chiefs as the custodians of the claims! I am speaking in this regard from a position of real advantage and knowhow. Just my two cents worth!”
Another mining guru from Mberengwa retorted that “the people of Mberengwa (us) are being blind folded! This is all hot air! This is just talk meant to send us to sleep! Most unfortunate. I simply do not agree with the claim that there will be chaotic mining of lithium if claims are given to the chiefs.”
Another mining guru from Mberengwa concurred with the other two and posited that “we need to help the chiefs to drive the point of dividend sharing and sustainable development home.
Our esteemed chiefs need not quickly accede to the small actions in the communities which are meant to wood-wink them. There is need for the chiefs to assert their authority and position in this respect. Otherwise, nothing will happen and we will continue to sink in poverty.”
I totally subscribe to the wisdom from mining technocrats from Mberengwa and want to advise our respected chiefs and general populace from Mberengwa against salivating at a poisoned carrot.
Hatidyiri uroyi mukunyara. Kuvimba has no right to tell our traditional leaders how best they should benefit from natural resources accruing in Mberengwa.
Rather it must engage in logical disputation with traditional leaders, mining technocrats and general populace from Mberengwa, take cognisant of their developmental concerns and share dividends with host communities.
Neither should Kuvimba feed us on a constant diet of promises that have no time-frames. The time to unite for sustainable development across the political divide in Mberengwa is now.
Dr Takavafira M. Zhou