Freedom Mupanedemo Midlands Bureau
A 65-year-old woman from Silobela, just outside Kwekwe, is accusing local legislator Cde Mthokozisi Manoki Mpofu of forcibly taking over her mine.
Ms Martha Moyo said she now feared for her life after Cde Mpofu allegedly hired thugs to torment her.
Cde Mpofu is however, refuting the claims, saying he is the one living in fear.
Ms Moyo claims that while the mine ownership wrangle is still before the courts, Cde Mpofu has continued to mine illegally.
Said Ms Moyo: “I lost my mine, Amazing Grace Mine after it was wrestled away from me by Cde Mpofu. He started by claiming that because of the name of the mine, I was in a partnership with the former First Lady (Grace Mugabe) and then some people invaded my mine. I stopped working at the mine and later realised that the MP was the one who had hired people to invade my mine.”
Ms Moyo said she presented her case before the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Mines and Mining Development which promised to assist her with certificate of protection.
“On 26 August, I approached Parliament and the portfolio committee chair Cde Edmund Mukaratigwa said I was going to get a protection certificate after I presented my predicament before the committee,” she said.
Ms Moyo, said her mine, was empowering local women who were doing shifts.
“It was a women’s project but because I am a Zanu-PF district official. Cde Mpofu felt threatened when I invited women to come and mine. He thinks I am earmarked for his seat come 2023, but I am old and cannot be active in politics at the age of 67 in 2023.
“I don’t know why he is seeing me as a threat,” said Ms Moyo.
Ms Moyo also accused Cde Mpofu of denying her the right to collect her equipment from the mine.
“I have been operating the mine for the last two years and had invested a lot. I, therefore, want to take away my equipment but I don’t have access to the mine,” she said.
Cde Mpofu, however, denied taking over the mine.
“I am also living in fear of this woman. She is going everywhere. She has been to Parliament; she has been to every office accusing me of taking over her mine which is not true.”
“I am also not at peace and there is a court case in which she is seeking a protection order and the ruling will the there on Monday next week at Kwekwe Magistrate Courts,” he said.