Panners invade Grace property

ONCE a colossal figure, First Lady Grace Mugabe yesterday saw how powerless she has become, as illegal gold panners have invaded her farm in Mazowe destroying citrus fruit, irrigation equipment and disrupted activities at her orphanage.


When Grace arrived at the farm and tried to confront the panners, they immediately broke into Kutongwa Kwaro, a song by Jah Prayzah synonymous with President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s ascension to power at the expense of her husband, former President Robert Mugabe, who was ousted following a military intervention.

“You don’t tell us to leave, we are just workers. Go and tell that to those who employed us,” one of the panners shouted, as Grace protested that this was her private property.

When NewsDay visited the farm yesterday, hundreds of panners were busy digging shafts in search of the precious metal after uprooting citrus trees.

Grace witnessed the panners busy digging and loading gold ore onto lorries for refining, while others were opening up fresh shafts, exposing irrigation pipes sunk metres deep.
The panners claimed they were employed by a Chinese miner they declined to name.

Grace tried in vain to order them off her property, with some saying in jest that they would only vacate the property if she provides them with jobs.

“You no longer have any power to remove us. This is the new dispensation, we do what we want,” one of the panners shouted when Grace left for Mazowe Police Station to report the matter.

Grace later went to Mazowe Police Station to make a report, where she implicated one Nyazvigo, as having dispatched the panners to her property.

“On the 29th day of March 2018 at around 11:30 hours, I was touring my farm, Smithfeld when I arrived at Lemon Pool section, I was shocked to find a group of approximately 400 men busy illegally panning for gold,” she said in a statement to police.

“I then asked them to stop their activities since I am the owner of the farm and I am the holder of a special grant for the whole area.

“However, the crowd, which was being led by one known as Nyazvigo started to shout obscenities at me and continued with their unlawful activities.

“The illegal activities have since destroyed my irrigation infrastructure, which feeds lemons pool section, and there is massive land degradation.”

Grace claimed she had a special grant from the Mines and Mining Development ministry for the area recorded under number 6045 signed on June 10, 2016.

Speaking to NewsDay after making the police report, Grace could not hide her anger at the panners.

“Does it mean that if President Mnangagwa is removed tomorrow, he will be disposed of his investments?

“Is this how he wants to be treated with his investments?

“This is politically motivated, as you can see that when we got there, they were singing kutonga kwaro garwe.”

The relationship between Mugabe and his former deputy has reportedly reached an all-time low after the former President intimated his support for the Ambrose Mutinhiri-led opposition National Patriotic Front if Mnangagwa refuses to “correct the November coup”.

The invasion followed reports of alleged withdrawal of security by Mnangagwa’s government from most of Mugabe’s properties after the former Zanu PF leader told international media recently that he was ousted in a coup engineered by his former deputy.

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  1. Comment…Ko Mashona aiurawa na Lobengula the terrorist havasi vanhu here. Ko Mashona aipambwa anodzorwa riini kumusha. Ko mombe dzavakaba dzinouuya riini ? Mandevere ane memory iri poor vanokoshiwa kuti vakambudza Mashona nguva yakareba nhasi voti hee Gukurahundi chii chacho futi kwavagere hakusi kwavo uko inyika yevaRozvi iyo. We were just settling old scores madzviti woye we will never apologize about aGukurahundi never never.

    1. Correct, very correct, we wanted to teach the Ndebeles never, never to repeat what they did in the 1800s of killing , raping and collecting cattle to Matebeleland. Gukurahundi was a revenge mission to appease all who were killed in the 18oos.

  2. mandebele Lusaba

    Comment…ko mandevere anopinda papi panyaya iyi u typical tribalist?

    1. @ mandebele lusaba, just read the extremely anti-Shona sentiment in the comments section under ‘The past is gone: ED’ report in yesterday’s(29/3/2018)edition of the Chronicle and you will probably understand why Chirisamhuru has posted the above comment. Most people find tribalism repulsive and primitive and I do not understand why the Editorial team at the State-owned paper is consistently allowing such abusive readers to post such repugnant nonsense. I hope and pray that someone in the Information Ministry will read this comment and take remedial and long overdue measures at the Chronicle in order to promote inter-ethnic harmony and tolerance.

  3. This story is biased and not complete. Where is the interview with Nyazvigo that you did?. I listened to a live interview with Nyazvigo yesterday and he said he is in possession of mining claims dated back to 2005. According to him, the special rights cannot override the claims he has. He said the Mugabe regime removed him by force and now he is back to his farm. Your story should cover both sides. Now it looks like these are people sent by ED, which is not correct. Nyazvigo is back to take his land.

  4. Feel it Zodwa. That’s precisely how we shuffered under the ruinous rule of the Bobster, your hubby.

  5. @CHIRISAMHURU kana uine proof of what u said bring it forward not pedestrian talk for gukurahundi we have evidence n pepetrators are still alive.@sam u are an educated fauilure the reporter reported what happened when disgrace arrived n what she said after police station report they is no need to interview Nyazvigo ndaaaa hure iri rinofanira kutorerwa zvose.well done reporter keep it up

    1. Kutorera Grace here uku kana kuti kuparadza nyika. How are going to recover the arable fertile soils being removed and dumped elsewhere when you come back to your senses with empty stomach?

  6. its actually an insulate to call those workers illegal miners that place is legally registered by Nyazvigo this is why he was asked by high court to return to his mine.I request the reporter to address those people as miners not planners please investigate first before you publish your stories,Grace is the illegal miner there her Special Grant is overpegging Nyazvigo’s Gold block,

  7. nhaiwe Mushava wakambo tsvagurudzawo here nyaya yakoiyi kana kuti wakangatambidzwa nyaya hauna kumbotsvagawo rumwe rutivi rwenyaya yako,Gire farm akaripiwa nani uye zviri pamutemo here,special grant rake ndereyi pamugodhi une mapepa akakwana? handiti ndoo kutora nechisimba kwaanga ajaira,kubva paMurume we munhu maproperties mafarms angaatora mamines zed.

  8. There is a difference between investigative reporting and reporting a story as it happens(current affairs). The reporter has no input in a story unfolding before his eyes, he has to right it as is, it’s not up to him/her to tell you whether or not it’s true.

  9. Sharp, the cry we have is Nyazvigo was there on site with his workers. Zimeye in the UK saw the wisdom of calling him and had live interview with him, yet, Newsday went to the scene, and never saw the importance of asking his point of view. They went on to declare the miners as illegal. Illegal in what sense when they had legal papers?

  10. Ndoo zvamunogona kutandanisa katsuro muchisiya nhoro. Ko white capital makamboinswawo here? Foreign exploitation by former colonialists,China, Russia, Arabs, Indians makamboinzwawo here? Kudzidza kwemaZimbabwe kurikupi? KUSANYARA!!

  11. Listen up, Grace – listen very carefully: What goes around will ALWAYS come around.

  12. If Nyazvigo is the rightful owner. Fine. He must impliment proper mining rather than having 400 excited panners on site – the result is serious land degradation. Even some big mines in Zim like Freda Rebecca , the single largest gold producer of Zimbabwe – does not employ that number in their mine production department.

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