ZELA urges govt to clamp on machete-wielding gangs

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  • Govt asked to formalise artisanal small-scale mining
  • Stringent, deterrent sentences a must

THE Zimbabwe Environmental Law Association (ZELA) has urged government to ensure it creates an enabling environment in the mining sector by granting miners titles as that could help stop machete-wielding gangs.

In a statement issued by Zela on Tuesday, the association said government should swiftly formalise artisanal and small-scale mining instead of criminalising it.

Mining has become a source of livelihood for many who are trying to escape persistent poverty.

“There is need for a holistic understanding of the machetes violence which could contribute to the development of multifaceted responses to curb criminality. Stringent and deterrent sentences must be endorsed, while the judiciary must ensure that bail is not granted to those human rights violators,” read the statement.

Zela said punitive measures must be taken to arrest the corruption scourge.

Government has also been urged to move a step further and gazette a Statutory Instrument whose objective would be to protect citizens from machetes gangs.

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