Mzi Khumalo under pressure to sell gold mine

 

 

TINASHE MAKICHI

 

South African mining magnate, Mzi Khumalo is said to be under  severe political and commercial pressure to dispose of the Redwing Gold Mine, located in Penhalonga, Manicaland Province, Business Times can report.

The Metallon Corporation boss has since sold some of his gold mining houses including Shamva Gold Mines to Kuvimba Mining House, Arcturus Mine to prominent lawyer Tawanda Nyambirai. Khumalo also disposed of the Mazowe Gold Mine.

The Metallon Group has kept the flagship How Mine and Redwing, which is under receivership. The judicial manager is Cecil Madondo.

Multiple well-placed government sources told Business Times there was political pressure to push Khumalo out.

“There is a push for Mzi Khumalo to dispose of his control in Redwing Mine and there are indications that the South African might bow to political and commercial pressure. Remember his disposal of Shamva Mine was also out of pressure,” one source said.

“Therefore he had decided to keep Redwing considering its rich resource together with How Mine but it looks like there are forces determined to take over this Manicaland based mine.

Already there have been serious fights on gold claims around Redwing Mine.”

All efforts to get a comment from Khumalo were futile.

He had not responded to text messages sent to him by the time of going to print. His phone continuously went unanswered.

Redwing Mine has of late been subject to a nasty fight for control.

Recently, the government proposed a task force comprising officials from the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, Ministry of Mines and Mining Development and the Office of the President and Cabinet to investigate issues around the continued fight for control of Redwing Mine.

The parties have been accused of name-dropping senior government and ZANU-PF officials.

The fight over control of Redwing Mine has led to the arrest of the mine’s judicial manager Madondo on fraud allegations.

The fight for control of Redwing Mine is pitting Probadek Investments and Betterbrands Mining owned by Scot Sakupwanya, a prominent gold dealer.

Sakupwanya is also the interim chairman of a recently formed indigenous gold buyers association, the National Gold Buyers Association (NGBA).

The NGBA was established to counter a cartel of largely gold buyers, which has been accused of manipulating prices of the yellow metal at the detriment of the economy.

The gold buying cartel had been enjoying the monopoly of having gold export licences and it was easy for them to distort and manipulate gold buying prices on the market.

It is understood that following a breakdown in negotiations between the two companies there has been a plot to outwit each other which saw various allegations of fraud and dishonesty being raised.

The faction controlled by Sakupwanya is claiming victimisation and accusing the other faction of abusing State apparatus to fight business wars while the other faction claims they were genuinely duped and there was a need for recourse.

This saw Probadek Investments directors Patricia Mutombgwera and Grant Chitate filing a fraud case at the Special Anti-Corruption Unit in the Office of the President.

Business Times is also reliably informed that another docket was opened for Sakupwanya while his partner, a Chinese national was briefly arrested and released.

Redwing Mine has underground and surface operations. It has a processing plant dedicated to underground operations and another to surface sand operations with a current resource close to 5m ounces of gold.

 

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