Story by Kenias Chivuzhe
The construction of Sabi Star Mine in Buhera is nearing completion with the US$130 million project expected to be commissioned in August this year.
The road map to attain a US$12 billion mining industry by the end of the year is becoming a reality with the US$130 million Sabi Star Lithium Mine expected to be commissioned by August this year.
In an interview during a tour of Sabi Star Mine in Buhera Wednesday, Mine Manager, Mr Oswald Makonese revealed that US$80 million has been invested in the project so far.
“Our project is 80 per cent complete and we expect to commission the project in August this year. We have spent over US$80 million of our US$130 budget and we are now testing the equipment we have installed. As for the electricity power station, we are 40 per cent complete,” noted Mr Makonese.
“We have installed a generator capacity of 15 megawatts that will ensure we start production before the power generation is completed. We have four million tonnes of lithium and 2 million tonnes of tantalite in our reserves. We are still conducting exploration at our other mining claims to increase the project lifeline,” he added.
The Minister of State for Presidential Affairs and Monitoring Implementation of Government Programmes, Dr Joram Gumbo expressed satisfaction with the progress at the mine which feeds into the target of a US$12 billion mining economy by the end of the year.
“This is one of the projects that are contributing towards a US$12 billion mining industry by the end of the year. I am happy with the progress being recorded at this mine. The mine is employing 600 workers but at one time there were one thousand due to mechanisation,” he said.
“This is in line with the government’s thrust for the local communities to benefit from their resources. A number of projects including road rehabilitation, drilling of boreholes, construction of classroom blocks and a clinic among other projects have been implemented,” he added.
The project has already had an impact on Manicaland Province.
“We are happy that there is huge progress at this mine since the President came here. The mine is spearheading a lot of developmental projects including the envisaged piped water project from Save River that will see our people embarking on irrigation schemes. This will greatly improve the provincial GDP as well as national GDP,” Manicaland Minister of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution, Honourable Nokuthula Matsikenyere said.
“We would greatly appreciate it if the company construct a tarred road for the 38 kilometres linking the main road to the company,” stated Chief Nyashanu’s representative, Wilson Chirozva.
“The tarring of the road to the mine as well as the construction of dams as well as education and health facilities,” Buhera North aspiring legislator, Phillip Guyo said.
The positive developments at Sabi Star Lithium mine come after the revival and expansion of mines such as Eureka Gold Mine in Guruve, Pickstone Peerless Mine in Chegutu, Unki Mine in Shurugwi and Murowa Diamonds in Zvishavane among other mines.