(Last Updated on March 30, 2023 by ZIMDAILY EDITOR)
By WaMwari Divine Chaminuka Mafa
As a concerned citizen, I write to you about the critical issue of our nation’s natural resources, particularly gold mining and its impact on our economy and environment.
Zimbabwe is a country blessed with vast reserves of natural resources, including Gold, but the management of these resources has been troubling in recent years. Our government has resorted to accepting money from criminals to buy Gold from mines with little to no skills, degrading our environment and leaving us in debt to these criminal elements. Divine Mafa A recent documentary by Al Jazeera has highlighted that 90% of the Gold that has been externalized out of Zimbabwe has never made it back to our country.
This demands urgent attention and action. We must recognize the critical importance of managing our natural resources sustainably, socially responsibly, and economically beneficially.
One positive factor that we can build on is the gold coin system that we created in the past.
This system kept Gold within our borders and prevented it from being externalized, which was a significant step towards creating a stable economy.
However, this system has been suspended, and we must find a way to revive it and make it work.
To revive the gold coin system, we must first address the root causes of our reliance on criminal elements for gold mining.
This means tackling corruption and strengthening our regulatory framework to ensure that only reputable and responsible companies are granted mining licenses.
We must also invest in training and technology to ensure that our mines are operating at the highest standards of safety and environmental responsibility.
Moreover, we must explore opportunities to leverage our natural resources in innovative and sustainable ways. Renewable energy technologies have great potential to provide clean energy and create jobs while reducing our reliance on finite resources like Gold. We must also explore opportunities in industries such as biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, and software development, which have the potential to drive growth and innovation in our economy.
Zimbabwe should focus on diversifying its economy by investing in tertiary and technological business sectors. This could help to create more stable and sustainable sources of income that are not reliant on finite resources like Gold. In conclusion, I urge all Zimbabweans to come together as a nation to address this critical issue. It’s important to note that Zimbabwe’s gold production remains constant at 600,000 ounces per year, and there are no new significant discoveries.
It would take approximately 21-22 years to deplete the known reserves of 13.1 million ounces of Gold. However, this is just an estimate, and several factors could affect the time it takes to deplete the gold reserves. Despite this, it’s clear that relying solely on the extraction and sale of natural resources is not a sustainable long-term economic strategy. Therefore, we must work towards creating a more sustainable and prosperous future for our country. Other countries like Britain and France have more enormous reserves than Zimbabwe, yet they do not mine Gold.
This highlights the importance of managing our resources responsibly and exploring other opportunities for economic growth and diversification. Let us work together to build a Zimbabwe that is a shining example of innovation, sustainability, and social responsibility.
Thank you for taking the time to read my letter and consider this critical issue. Together, we can work towards creating a more sustainable and prosperous future for our country.