Calls For Govt To Shutdown Scott Sakupwanya’s Redwing Mine Increase

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Residents and Civic Society Groups (CSOs) in Manicaland province have recommended the immediate closure of Redwing Mine in Penhalonga following continuous deaths due to accidents.

The calls come after 11 miners were trapped underground after a shaft collapsed on Thursday morning.

Concerned CSOs told NewsDay yesterday that they were alarmed by the rise in the cases of artisanal miners losing lives in the dangerous mining shafts at Redwing Mine.

Redwing Mine is owned by Pedzisai “Scott” Sakupwanya, who is also Mabvuku Member of Parliament.

The CSOs, residents and human rights groups have challenged the government to effect accountability measures to avoid more deaths.

Director of Centre for Research and Development James Mupfumi said: “There is need to immediately terminate corrupt, lawless and deadly open pit mining at Redwing Mine. Government must institute an inquiry into Better Brands Mine activities that have resulted in asset stripping at Redwing Mine and the loss of lives of this magnitude,” he said.

“Government must also suspend immediately the entire Ministry of Mines inspectorate for allowing unsafe mining operations to continue at Redwing Mine. The mine must be given an opportunity to look for mining investors with capacity to resuscitate underground mining operations. Government must play it’s regulatory role in the economy and stop political interference in mining activities, compromising its functions.”

Farai Maguwu, a human rights activist said: “Government must engage a real investor or bring back Metallon Gold. These fly by night miners operate at a great cost to the lives of artisanal miners. We need formal mining in Penhalonga.”

Director of Penhalonga Youth Development Trust Clinton Musanga said the current mining practices at Redwing Mine are not sustainable and pose significant risks to the lives of workers and the local community.

“We strongly believe that the government should terminate the contracts associated with this mining operation. Instead of continuing with the current dangerous mining method, we urge the government to focus on underground mining, which has proven to be a safer and more accountable practice in many cases. By transitioning to underground mining, we can prioritise the safety of workers and the well-being of the community while also fostering long-term development,” said Musanga.

Justice Chinhema, the Zimbabwe Diamond and Allied Minerals Workers Union secretary general weighed in saying operations at the mine must be stopped immediately.

“There is need to investigate the atrocities that have been happening there, and we believe it was criminality taking place, so as to arrest all criminals and cartels who have been benefiting through those illegal activities,” he said. *AMH*













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