Human rights lawyers have given a seven-day ultimatum to Ming Chang Sino Africa, a Chinese miner with operations in Bindura to take measures to tackle environmental pollution which is putting the health of locals at risk.
The Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) has written a letter on behalf of the villagers to Ming Chang asking the miner to de-contaminate some areas of Saimona village which were affected by its cyanide discharge and to adopt dust suppression methods in order to mitigate dust pollution.
ZLHR said they have asked the miner to use silent blasting technology to mitigate noise pollution during its operations.
They have also requested the company to re-site its slime dam and to keep a reasonably sufficient distance between the blasting site and residential houses.
The lawyers want the miner to publish a timetable of any intended blasting activity, clearly stating the day and time of each blast.
The villagers said the miner’s blasting activities cause earth tremors which cause shock and also places them at the risk of being injured by rocks from the blasts as they go about their daily activities.
ZHLR has warned Ming Chang that if they fail to address the villagers’ concerns, ZLHR will be left with no option but to approach the High Court on an urgent basis for an order barring it from conducting its mining activities in Saimona village.
The lawyers said the villagers also reserve their right to sue for compensation arising from damage to their properties or injuries and illness suffered as a result of the miner’s operations.