Friday saw the mining sector embrace the introduction of the all-new Zimbabwe Allied Youth in Mining Organisation (ZAYIMO), which is meant to spearhead tutoring of the country’s future miners from grass roots level, as a means to tackle challenges faced in the sector.
ZAYIMO, whose mandate is to organise young and energetic youths in the mining sector, will simultaneously move to plug gold leakages by organising committees to run small scale production to ensure smooth registration and operations of gold activities in the country.
The move comes at a time when the gold sector wants to increase gold deliveries to 100 tonnes by 2030.
ZAYIMO founder Ephraim Fundukwa told the gathering during the launch that the youths will now be on the forefront of small-scale gold production to meaningfully contribute to the mining sector.
He said, “The Association will cover the whole nation and there are going to be coordinates in each province to ensure smooth registration and operations of the Association.
“This gesture will see the narrowing of gold leakages by small-scale miners, by making sure all gold obtained or discovered by miners should be sold straight to Fidelity. This ensures transparency as well as active contribution towards the growth of our economy. Our President said that by 2030 we should become an upper-middle income economy, and mining should be one of the contributors.”
The association will also mainstream gender issues as it also focuses on ushering all young women into the sector to defy the traditional belief that mining is for men.
Fundukwa told Business Times that the young women that participate in mining will be given first priority in accessing loans and getting mining claims.
“We recognise the need to push gender issues as enshrined in the constitution and therefore call for all young women to participate in the sector,” he added.
The Association also said one of its key values is safety. This is a major point of concern in small scale and artisanal mining as most will encounter accidents and some die on the job.
“Henceforth, the Association will make sure that safety is guaranteed for a registered miner on medical aid and funeral policies to make sure that those in the sector benefit from the association. We also value environmental protection hence the commitment to work with the Environmental Management Agency in all our operations across the country,” said Fundukwa.