MASVINGO – A major disease outbreak is looming at troubled Renco Mine in Masvingo amid claims that the gold mine has run out of chemicals for treating drinking water, a senior official confirmed.
Report by Tatenda Chitagu
The mine is home to some 5 000 people, comprising over 2 000 workers and their families. Mine manager Cyprian Kachisa told NewsDay last Thursday the mine, which ceased operations last week following a workers’ strike, had run out of money to buy water treatment chemicals.
“There is a great possibility of a major disease outbreak. We are faced with a big problem here because people are drinking unsafe water,” said Kachisa.
“We have run out of chemicals to treat drinking water and we have no money since there is no production taking place. This is a disaster in the making because we also want the water for flushing toilets,” he said. The mine also faces a Zesa power cut over an outstanding debt of more than $1 million.
“We were given up until Friday to pay up our debt, but it seems that deadline cannot be met. This will worsen things because residents will turn to unprotected open sources of water,” he said. Kachisa appealed to the relevant authorities to avert a humanitarian catastrophe at the mine.
“We just hope and pray that God will not leave all these people dying from waterborne diseases,” he said.