cde patrick chinamasa 17-08-10.jpgJustice and Legal Affairs Minister, Cde Patrick Chinamasa, has quashed claims by embattled businessman, Mutumwa Mawere, that he is the major shareholder of Shabanie-Mashava Mines (SMM), saying government wholly owns the mining firm.

Cde Patrick Chinamasa revealed this while presenting oral evidence on the involvement of government in Shabanie-Mashava Mines before the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Mines and Energy in Harare.

Cde Chinamasa said government is already courting Chinese investors for US$115 million.

“Of the US$115 million investment proposal, US$37 million is earmarked for investment into operations, while US$78 million will be for paying the company’s liabilities,” said Cde Chinamasa.

On the crippling of the mining firm, Cde Chinamasa said Mr Mawere single-handedly destroyed the company by diverting mining capital to other personal projects, adding that the firm was placed under reconstruction after it was already insolvent with its liabilities exceeding its assets by ZW$18,7 billion.

At its peak, SMM employed 60 000 workers and produced 12 000 tonnes of asbestos per month with 95% of the mineral being exported.