Three chiefs from Chikomba District, Mashonaland East Province, on Saturday, snubbed a traditional ritual ceremony to welcome a Chinese mining company.
Chiefs Nyoka, Chivese and Mutekedza skipped the rituals which are being hosted by Chief Musarurwa to appease ancestral spirits ahead of the official groundbreaking ceremony of the US$1 billion Chinese iron ore mining project.
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The three chiefs told Masvingo Mirror in separate interviews that they were not invited to the rituals although they are all superior to Chief Musarurwa.
When contacted for comment, Chief Musarurwa said he had postponed the event to Sunday (tomorrow) and added that anyone willing to attend the function is free to do so.
He denied allegations that he received US$25 000 cash from the Chinese mining company which he did not share with other chiefs.
Chikomba District Development Coordinator Michael Mariga confirmed the event but rejected claims that Chief Musarurwa was given money by the Chinese.
This is the second traditional ceremony held for the project after Chief Chirumanzu held another one last week.