The Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Mines and Mining Development recently told residents during a public hearing held at Masvingo's City Hall recently that two bills drafted by the mine ministry will enhance revenue collection in the mining sector.
The Mineral Exploration Marketing Corporation (MEMC) Bill and the Pan African Minerals University of Science and Technology (PAMUST) Bill come at the backdrop of the controversy surrounding the missing US$15 billion spirited out of Chiyadzwa diamond fields.
Speaking to TellZim News, chairperson of the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Mines and Mining Development, Daniel Shumba said the two bills, if enacted, will assist Zimbabwe to account for revenue realised from the mining sector.
"The MEMC is actually coming to replace the Minerals Marketing Corporation of Zimbabwe (MMCZ). This will enhance our performance in collecting revenue from the mining sector. The new bills are a step forward in efforts to rationalise the operations of the mining sector.
"Local people will benefit more if the bills become law as the law would be supported by a university, the Pan African University of Science and Technology which will offer training in most processes in mineral development locally," Shumba said.
Critics have however questioned whether the proposed laws will be able to plug the loopholes which have seen the US$15 billion disappearing without trace.
Participants also questioned the logic of constructing a new university proposing that government should instead expand existing infrastructure of local universities rather than shoulder a whole new expense.
"What I really want to know is whether these bills will bring back the missing 15 billion if enacted and more so, Zimbabwe school of mines is the sole learning institution for the mining field in much of SADC but it is underdeveloped and underutilised.
"Government should therefore stop wasting resources building a university dedicated solely to mining and must rather develop the available School of Mines so that it meets modern standards," said Ward 4 councillor, Godfrey Kurauone.news