A woman from Gokwe North District was seen playing “nhodo“, a traditional game using gold ore resulting in a gold rush in the area about two weeks ago.
More than 8 000 people from all walks of life have since descended on the Tongogara community to illegally extract the mineral.
Law enforcement agencies have been deployed to deal with crime, and clamp down on disregard of COVID-19 regulations and serious land degradation and pollution in the area.
Addressing a meeting comprising traditional leaders, legislators and government officials at Gokwe Nembudziya growth point on Monday to discuss the new discovery and the rush by illegal miners, Gokwe North District development coordinator, Martin Musakanda said:
It is confirmed that a woman picked up a piece of gold ore from the place in question.
The gold ore was then discovered by knowledgeable community members after noticing that the woman was using the ore to play a traditional game called nhodo.
She eventually led the community to the place, which subsequently led to a massive movement of people from all walks of life to the place.
Musakanda urged the government to deal with the social vices that have sprouted in the area, which is located about 50 kilometres from the Nembudziya growth point. He said:
We recommended that the illegal activities be stopped forthwith and allow formal processes to take place, that the Ministry of Mines and Mining Development takes the lead, holders of prospecting licences register with the local rural district council, security areas to take charge and that a community share ownership be mooted.
In line with Government’s devolution agenda, we recommended that a community share ownership scheme be created.
Speaking at the same occasion, Gokwe Nembudziya legislator Justice Mayor Wadyajena expressed concern that traditional leaders were stopped by some police officers from carrying out traditional rituals at the site.