By Mazvita Makuyana
Mr. Clever Masviki, popularly known as Mambo Chipuriro said he welcomes development in his area including the controversial Mavhuradonha area, without any discrimination as long it benefits the locals.
The Mavhuradonha Wilderness is situated in the northeast of Zimbabwe, about 180km from Harare. The name ‘Mavhuradonha’ roughly translates from the Shona language as ‘dripping water’, which describes the delicate rain that sometimes descends on the slopes of the nearby mountains.
Mambo Chipuriro, in an interview, said in line with the devolution agenda by the Second Republic, he is ready to open up to investors who are there to develop the community as well as create jobs for his people.
This follows media reports allegedly saying villagers around Mavhuradonha wanted investors as far away from their cultural site as possible as it was destroying the environment and disregarding their views by building roads across their fields.
The matter received attention in local and international media but Mambo Chipuriro said he has the final say in what has to happen in his ancestral land.
“We allowed mining activities in consultation with Ministry of Mines, National Monuments, Environmental Management Agency (EMA) and other government agencies,” he said.
“The area belongs to us, not Chief Chiweshe and we are the ones that conduct rituals there. We welcome any investor irrespective of race or colour as part of the developmental agenda. Mining, tourism, and other economic activities can coexist.
“My boundary stretches to Musengezi, Mukwadzi, and Hunyani rivers. I am in charge of the area as far as Kanyemba now known as Mbire. It is the land of my ancestors, of the Soko totem,” he said.
Mambo Chipuriro was responding to the allegations that a Chinese firm has dug dangerously deep pits and constructed roads exploring for chrome in Mavhuradonha Wilderness.
Afrochine, the country’s biggest ferrochrome producer, says although it holds claims to the mining areas, it is yet to commence operations there and has complained that illegal activities currently taking place there are also prejudicial to it.
A recent High Court order stopped mining operations in a portion of the Wildlife reserve but did not impose a blanket ban on mining – Mashonaland Central’s highest GDP earner.
Apart from chrome and gold, other minerals found in Guruve include semi-precious stones and manganese.
In July, the Government through the Minerals Marketing Corporation of Zimbabwe announced that it would like to engage reputable companies to partner in the development of its chrome projects through mining, processing, beneficiation, and value addition of chrome within its 40 blocks of claims occupying an area of about 1 464 hectares.