Mnangagwa declares war on machete gangs

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PRESIDENT Mnangagwa yesterday condemned violence and lawlessness among artisanal miners saying perpetrators of mining related crimes who go about wielding machetes should face the full wrath of the law.

There have been reports of violence among artisanal miners who go about invading mining claims while attacking each other with machetes.
Some have since been nicknamed Mashurugwi while others have earned themselves a vernacular sobriquet, Vemabhemba as reports of violent clashes over the control of mining claims continue to be reported across the country.

President Mnangagwa who was addressing delegates attending the inaugural Artisanal and Small-Scale Miners conference hosted by the Zimbabwe Miners’ Federation (ZMF) in Gweru said such violent clashes should stop.

“We have heard through the media about the lawlessness among artisanal miners, some invading other people’s mines while armed with machetes. The president of the Zimbabwe Miners Federation (Ms Henrieta Rushwaya) has, however, distanced the artisanal miners from these crimes saying they were not the ones involved in such clashes. She said these were the works of some rogue elements bent on tarnishing the artisanal miners’ name.

“We have said we don’t want this, anyone found in possession of these dangerous weapons should be arrested and jailed,” said President Mnangagwa.