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Marange, Chiadzwa and other diamond fields and the Kimberley Process - Index of articles
push for diamond policy enforcement
Owen Gare, The Independent (Zimbabwe)
November 22, 2013
academics and economists have urged the government to operationalise
its diamond policy to ensure the country benefits from its gems
whose mining has been shrouded in secrecy, shady involvement of
the security sector and under-remittance of proceeds to Treasury.
a diamond policy in November last year which seeks to “promote
the sustainable development of the diamond industry for the benefit
of all Zimbabweans” but has not implemented it amid allegations
some Zanu PF elites and securocrats were looting the precious mineral.
This was one
of the major resolutions which emerged from a seminar titled Zimbabwe:
The Political Economy and Minerals (Diamonds) held in Pretoria,
South Africa, a fortnight ago.
The seminar was organised by the African Public Policy and Research
Institute and Africa University, with the aim of interrogating issues
in Zimbabwe’s diamond mining sector.
It was also
meant to develop policy options to hand over to government and civil
society for possible modification and adoption.
The policy has
been viewed as a sound document which could bring about transparency
in the sector by, among other things, ensuring “access to
diamond trade and financial records of all companies involved in
diamond activities” by government and its various arms.
Under the policy,
the Ministry of Mines is tasked with ensuring all diamond revenue
is collected and remitted to Treasury.
The policy is
also aimed at ensuring ordinary Zimbabweans and future generations,
even those living in areas without diamonds, benefit from the resource
through channelling proceeds from royalties to the Sovereign Wealth
The funds accrued
will then be invested in other sectors of the economy.
attended the seminar concurred that ordinary Zimbabweans were yet
to truly benefit from diamonds although government ostensibly introduced
the indigenisation programme specifically for that purpose.
after flushing out artisanal miners in preference for corporate
miners, there has been a limited inflow into the national fiscus,”
said Tinashe Nyamunda from the University of Stellenbosch.
has further defeated the concept and policy of indigenisation and
economic empowerment as the local indigenous people and broader
national indigenous population are both disenfranchised from benefiting
from the Marange resource.
from Marange have a limited direct impact on the ordinary Zimbabweans
and their livelihoods; therefore questioning the credibility of
indigenous and economic empowerment in the case of these diamond
people of Chiadzwa and Marange, the economic empowerment and indigenisation
policy has turned out to be a pie in the sky.”
Last year, then
Finance minister Tendai Biti cut his 2012
budget from US$4 billion to US$3,4 billion, blaming poor revenue
inflows from diamonds.
Biti said of
the US$600 million which was expected from diamonds last year, only
US$41,6 million was received by Treasury during the first half of
Pamela Machakanja from the Institute of Peace and Governance Leadership
at Africa University said a new mindset was needed to ensure the
link between mineral endowment and development.
the stepping stone must be in the operationalisation of the diamond
policy which was adopted in 2012. Once operational, this can set
the country on a trail towards ensuring that the diamond resource
is channelled towards national development,” said Machakanja.
also recommended that the ownership of mining companies in Chiadzwa
be “interrogated, together with production levels and revenue
generation, and be made public”.
This is also
in line with the diamond policy, which advocates for transparency
and remittance of revenue to Treasury.
There was a
recommendation that the conflict between the state, local communities
and diamond companies in Chiadzwa be addressed urgently. People
in Manicaland, including the Minister of State for provincial affairs
Chris Mushowe, have been complaining bitterly that the province,
particularly Chiadzwa community, is not benefitting from the gems.
an academic from Wits University, said the inter-phase of the coming
in of corporate miners and elbowing out of the artisanal miners
resulted in conflict and socio-economic distortions.
were moved away from their traditional locations to make way for
the establishment of mines. In this process they lost their social,
cultural and economic entitlements that were geocentric,”
Process (KP) has often come under attack for giving the nod to Zimbabwe
to trade in diamonds despite allegations of secrecy, militarisation,
looting and human rights abuses.
Nhlapo, the chairperson of the KP, however, highlighted that the
original mandate of the KP does not include oversight over democratically
elected governments, although current demands are that this be the
He said even
if the definition were to change, KP would still face “a bigger
challenge” of who makes the call on which democratically elected
governments need to be investigated and censured.
KP should never encroach into the sovereignty of nations “otherwise
it continues being seen as a mechanism for regime change.
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