The government of Zimbabwe has almost finished drafting proposed amendments to the Mines and Minerals Act which will oblige mining companies to fund the development of local communities and give traditional chiefs unlimited power to run development programs in such mining areas.
Chamber of Mines President Victor Gapare said his organization is impressed with the proposals as mining concerns have a social responsibility to develop local communities.
But critics said some proposed amendments could cause confusion in the sector as regulations for the implementation of the 2007 Indigenization Act, now being revised, would also oblige companies to reinvest locally.
Gapare told VOA Studio 7 reporter Gibbs Dube that the new legislation won’t clash with indigenization legislation or regulations, adding that mining companies operating in Zimbabwe “have always undertaken corporate social responsibility activities in the community and will continue doing so.”
But political commentator Nkululeko Sibanda said giving traditional chiefs control of development activities could be abused by local authorities of the former ruling ZANU-PF party which has a long history of patronage.