CHEGUTU West MP Dexter Nduna (Zanu PF) has been accused of mobilising illegal gold miners to invade Pickstone Peerless Gold Mine, disrupting its operations and repealing police officers deployed to restore order at the mine.
BY BLESSED MHLANGA
The mine owners, Breckrigdge Investments (Pvt) Ltd, have filed a court application seeking an order barring Nduna from entering the mine or inciting people to sabotage and illegally carry out mining activities at the mine.
Filed under case number BO04/16, Breckridge Investments (Pvt) Ltd alleged Nduna, whose address of service is Zanu PF offices, Chegutu, held a rally with illegal gold miners on May 14 last year and incited them to invade the mine.
“On May 14, Nduna organised and convened a rally at the mine, wherein he incited artisanal miners to disrupt operations of the applicant by barricading roads to stop machinery and motor vehicles from accessing areas within the mine, where the illegal miners were conducting illegal mining,” the court papers read.
The Zanu PF legislator is alleged to have told the illegal miners during another meeting to disregard police orders and fight back if ordered to vacate the mine.
“On November 20, 2015, Nduna organised another meeting at the mine, particularly at PEO3 pit. At the meeting, he again addressed illegal miners and informed them to continue mining as no one could stop them,” the application further reads.
“He further allegedly advised the illegal miners to resist eviction with whatever means necessary.”
Breckridge Investments (Pvt) Ltd said due to Nduna’s actions, they have now cut down on operations and employees at the mine, especially security personel, who are living in constant fear of being attacked.
The company, through its lawyer Caroline Mugabe, further submitted that due to the illegal and unstructured mining activities, three people had already lost their lives in mine accidents.
“So far, three deaths have been recorded at the mine. Despite the clear risk of injury and death the artisanal miners face, they remain adamant due to the confidence instilled by Nduna,” the application reads.
The mine claimed that it had video and pictorial evidence of Nduna’s actions and could place them before the courts if the need arises. Nduna is yet to file a response to the application.