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‘Mining is game changer’

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By Nellie Kapatuka:

The Ministry of Mining has rated development of the mining sector as crucial for the country’s socio-economic development.

Minister of Mining Albert Mbawala said this recently when he officially opened Malingunde Community Centre Hall constructed by Sovereign Services Limited, a mining company which is soon expected to start extracting graphite in the area.

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Mbawala said Malawi stands to benefit a lot from mining activities by Sovereign Services Limited which, he said, could supplement agriculture, which the country has relied on for several years as a main source of income.

He said no corruption and fraudulent activities would be entertained under his ministry’s watch.

“We have a Comprehensive Policy and a new Mines and Minerals Act of 2019 which outline how mining agreements should be done where 0.05 percent of gross sales are supposed to go to communities in which mining activities are happening.

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“Through this, the country should be rest assured that what happened with Kayelekera Uranium Mine will not happen again,” Mbawala said.

The minister then commended Sovereign Services Limited for constructing the community hall, saying it would assist in revenue generation for the area and has since asked other companies to emulate the good gesture.

Sovereign Services Limited Exploration Geologist Reidwll Nyirenda said the company has constructed the community hall as a token of appreciation for the good working relationship they had throughout their feasibility study period.

He said mining activities are expected to start in 2024 using a K50 billion investment.

While commending the company for the wonderful gesture, councillor for the area, Macdonald Mandauka, urged people in the area to desist from selling their land.

The Australian-based firm started its feasibility study in 2016 through which graphite samples were collected from the area.—Mana

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