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Call for legislation to deal with farmers and miners’ conflicts

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By Anna Chibamu

PRO-WOMEN NGO, Women and Land in Zimbabwe has petitioned parliament to enact laws aimed at addressing endless conflicts among farmers and miners, with some ending in loss of life.

This was revealed in parliament Tuesday by National Assembly Speaker Jacob Mudenda.

“I have to inform the House that on Tuesday, 3rd December, 2019, Parliament of Zimbabwe received a petition from Ms. T. Chidavarume of the Women and Land Zimbabwe, requesting Parliament to enact legislation that effectively addresses conflicts between farmers and miners which has resulted in the loss of lives,” Mudenda told parliament.

The petition has since been referred to the Lands and Mines committees.

Women and Land in Zimbabwe is a rural women’s organisation that addresses unequal ownership of, and control over, land and natural resources.

The petition by the group comes as small-scale miners and farmers are fighting over mining claims pegged in some farms.

In some of the conflicts, parties have taken each other to court over rights and the ownership issues.

According to the Minerals Act, all the land belongs to the state and the rights to conduct mining are conferred by having a mining claim (s) or a special grant issued to the holder of the mining rights.

The conflicts also come amid deadly Zanu PF aligned machete wielding gang wars among mining syndicates in parts of the country.