By Business Reporter – Friday 5 April 2019
HARARE (Mining Index) – THE new miners’ representative body, Zimbabwe Artisanal and Small-Scale Miners’ Federation (ZASMF) was established to properly represent miners in influencing mining sector policy framework by addressing challenges, bringing change and development that promote mining sector boom.
“Miners as entrepreneurs and business people group under associations and organisations in the hope of influencing sector policy framework and sector changes geared towards growth and expansion.”
ZASMF was founded following a high court directive giving the old Zimbabwe Miners Federation (ZMF) executive led by Ishmael Kaguru to resume leadership of ZMF, ousting Henrietta Rushwaya who had been at the helm of the federation since June 2018.
“It should be noted that under the Former Executive miners did not register any growth,” noted ZASMF, adding that “In the interest of industry progress miners chose to establish a new organisation that would represent their needs. Despite the perception created by the Former Executive that there is chaos and misunderstanding amongst miners. Miners have unified under the ZASMF umbrella.”
ZASMF noted that on April 25th 2015 ZMF former National Executive Board was reinstated for the fifteenth consecutive year for a further 3 year term that expired on April 26th 2018.
This followed continued calls by miners to hold elections which was hindered by lack of funds. “Miners finally resolved to call for elections which incidentally were attended by members of the former executive.”
“It is important to note the Former Executive participated in the election process and lost,” noted ZASMF.
“27 out of 30 associations participated in the elections. After the completion of elections miners ushered in a new Executive Board, which then came into office.”
ZASMF said despite attempts by the former executive to make the election process look flawed, it no way diminishes the fact that miners called for elections to push for progress and development within the sector.
“The attempt by the Former Executive to personalise the court battle does not address the fact that the key players are the Miners and for the current President to assume power it was with the backing of miners who have openly been supporting the newly elected Executives of the Federation to date,” read part of the statement.
According to ZASMF, ZMF has appealed against the court order and the case is now pending before the Supreme Court.
“The Current Executive is confident that our appeal will be heard as we note several factors have been overlooked, primarily that the interests and needs of one Association cannot override the vote of 29 other Associations, as the Miners through their voting have final say in all matters affecting the Federation.”
According to ZASMF, the Former Executives sought to disrupt the newly elected executives by filing the court application seeking to nullify the election thereby seeking to cause confusion amongst miners and insisting that no change had taken place and that they still held their previous executive positions.
“The case was finally heard last week and the Former Executives were granted an order citing that the elections were not above board due to a technicality citing that the CEO had no legal rights to move for elections,” said ZASMF.
“It was later discovered that while Miners were attending the election process an aggrieved official of the Zvishavane/Mberengwa Miners Association who had subsequently lost the Chairmanship position during the election process had filed a High Court application which was to be heard on the 14th of June, 2018.”
ZASMF believes due process was followed in which the Minister of Mines and Mining Development sent seconding officials to officiate, represented by the then Permanent Secretary, Mr. Munodawafa, Ministry of Mines Legal Adviser, Mrs. N Muchinguri and a high delegation team from the School of Mines. ENDS//