By Staff Reporter
THE ruling Zanu PF party’s Midlands provincial leadership last week reportedly ordered members of its youth league, to invade Gaika Gold Mine on the outskirts of the Midlands city, it has been learnt.
Highly placed sources told NewZimbabwe.com that a meeting, held last Thursday, at the Zanu PF offices in Kwekwe resolved that the youths needed to raise money to prepare for Mnangagwa’s “Thank You rally” initially set for this weekend.
At the meeting the leadership of the party in the province told youths that they needed resources to prepare for the President’s impending visit.
“So the only way they could raise the money was to invade Gaika Mine. Hundreds of youths are there now just digging indiscriminately, its a free for all. The owners of the mine don’t know what to do,” said a source close to the issue.
“This behavior actually flies in the face of Mnangagwa’s claims that he is creating a conducive environment for business. Its total chaos, especially in the mining sector.”
Zanu PF Midlands spokesperson Cornelius Mupereri while admitting party youths are on the mine rejected claims they had been asked by the party to do so. He also argued the youths’ presence at the gold mine was not illegal.
“We never asked the youths to invade the mine. The argument of illegal or legality is very subjective. This is a matter in the courts and it is only proper that we allow the judicial process to be concluded before we say more,” said Mupereri.
Early this month, former Zanu PF MP for Mbizo Vongaishe Mupereri, vowed to move machinery to the mine “as part of our programs of youth empowerment.”
“We are going to continue occupying Gaika Mine and empower our youths in the area of employment. Exploration activities are going to continue at Gaika Mine. Our people have been prospecting at the mine and bringing food on the table and that is going to continue.
“For improved efficiency, we are going to be moving machinery to the site. We are not going back on empowering our people,” Mupereri said.
The former law maker last approached the Supreme Court challenging the decision of the High Court directing the Ministry of Mines and Mining Development to stop granting anyone mining rights at the gold mine.
Mupereri was accused by Carel Hendrik Meyer, the manager of the mine, of violently attempting to take over the property from its owners and violating property rights by allegedly inciting a group of people to unlawfully enter the property.
Mnangagwa has since reportedly cancelled the rally that was set to be held at Chachacha Growth Point in Shurugwi after the devastating cyclone Idai left a trail of death and destruction in Masvingo and Manicaland provinces.