By Courage Bushe
Mberengwa district has recently made headlines amid a lithium rush at Sandawana Mine, where more than 5 000 artisanal miners and unscrupulous dealers descended on the area in search of the mineral.
However, the illegal operations have been halted by the government, with revelations that the mineral was being sold in neighbouring countries, hence prejudicing the State of revenue.
“We were informed that there was a lithium rush here in Mberengwa and that’s why we came here so that we see for ourselves what is taking place and what ought to be done so that the people of Mberengwa will benefit from this mineral,” said the Midlands Minister of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution, Senator Larry Mavhima.
The Zimbabwe Miners Federation says the formalisation of lithium mining in the area is critical for the US$12 billion mining economy to be attained by 2023.
“We as ZMF are coming up with plans to make sure that our artisanal miners are benefitting from lithium mining and at the same time making sure that government is benefiting from it,” said Zimbabwe Miners Federation President, Ms Henrietta Rushwaya.
Kuvimba Mining House has already attained a mining tribute for Sandawana Mine.
Kuvimba Mining House Operations Manager, Tendekai Muganyi, “Yes, I can confirm that we entered into an agreement with ZMF and we gave them a tribute to mine. Also, as Kuvimba Mines under the Zimbabwe Mining Development Corporation l, we are engaging stakeholders whom we think will help us realise vision 2023 of a US$12 billion mining industry.”
Zimbabwe is the world’s fifth largest lithium producer, with production having risen steadily in recent years, with the 2021 output at 1 200 metric tonnes.