Mines minister Walter Chidakwa, together with parastatals operating in the Chiadzwa diamond fields, have complied with a court order allowing Mbada Diamonds security personnel back on site to safeguard the company’s property, as the licensing impasse rages on.
BY CHARLES LAITON
Addressing parties’ representatives in chambers, High Court judge, Justice Joseph Mafusire said he had been advised “there was a substantial compliance with the court order by the respondents” (Chidakwa, Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation, Marange Resources, Zimbabwe Consolidated Diamond Company and Mbada Diamonds).
Last week, Chidakwa was held to be in contempt of court following his non-compliance with the court order issued in favour of Grandwell Holdings, who are the major shareholders of Mbada Diamonds.
Chidakwa had previously indicated he had not defied the court order, but that Mbada’s security personnel had to undergo security checks first, which was a prerequisite, before being allowed into the diamond fields despite the fact that the same guards used to secure the premises before the Zimbabwe Republic Police took over.
The application by Grandwell Holdings challenging the government’s decision to withdraw licences of all diamond mining firms in Chiadzwa continued yesterday, with Mbada Diamonds maintaining the move should be reversed as the gem mining firm was not consulted over the resolution despite holding 50% shares in the joint venture with the government. Mbada said it approached the court seeking restoration of its possession to discourage “self-help actions” that had been conducted by government.
Meanwhile, another diamond mining company, Chinese-owned Anjin Investments, has also approached the High Court seeking to have Chidakwa’s directive declared null and void.The matter is set for hearing tomorrow.