Local businessman Yakub Ibrahim Mahomed has taken the Mines and Minerals Minister Winston Chitando to court accusing him of grabbing eight gold-rich mining claims in Mberengwa.
He is also accused of:
- Mining the gold claims while knowing there was an ongoing dispute regarding ownership.
- Influencing mines secretary Onesimo Moyo, and Nelson Munyanduri, the Midlands provincial mining director, to ignore Mahomed’s complaints.
Mohamed has approached the High court and he is reportedly making the following demands:
- That the court cancels a special grant issued by the mines minister favoring the Golden Reef
- He also wants the forfeiture notices of his claims canceled.
- He wants the forfeited mining claims to be declared his assets, and be returned to his company, Anesu Gold,
- Chitando’s Golden Reef to pay him for the gold it has mined from the disputed mining claims.
In his founding affidavit, Mohamed reportedly stated that:
In January 2019, the registration certificates were handed over to Fidelity Printers with specific instructions to cover all outstanding inspection fees from the loan facility.
A loan was released with full knowledge of all parties and the fees were paid to the mines ministry and receipted in Gweru by Munyanduri.
“Then it came to pass that at some stage the applicant received a bombshell that some of the mining claims had been forfeited and that actually, a special grant No. 7321 had been issued over the forfeited mining claims. On further investigations, I found out that two notices of forfeiture had been issued,” said Mahomed.
He told the court the two notices were published by sticking them on the notice board at the mines ministry head office in Harare, and Munyanduri’s offices in Gweru.
The notices were never served on Mahomed.
I never saw, let alone received the notices and, therefore, the applicant was not aware of the notices until after the event. Otherwise I, on behalf of the applicant would have taken steps to protect the applicant’s rights and interests in the mining claims,” said Mahomed.
It is more proper to set out the unfolding of events to show that behind the alleged forfeiture of the mining claims stands the dark shadows of gigantic Uncle Tom called fraud and corruption,
….Mahomed claims he also once engaged businessman Shingi Mutasa and Chitando before he was appointed mines minister. Chitando flew to the Mberengwa gold claims for an inspection, but Mutasa failed to turn up.
He said it was when Chitando gathered information of the “juicy areas” of the mining claims that he hatched a plan to boot Mohamed out.
The businessman said he continued carrying out due diligence regarding mining processes, paying inspection fees, which were received by the mines ministry, but was never told about the forfeiture.
Before the forfeiture, the mining claims were 128 in total.