Commercial property owners are counting losses after illegal miners vandalised their property following a gold rush at Mberengwa Turn-off Business Centre in the Midlands.

The business centre has been a popular social hub for small scale miners, not knowing the area has a rich gold deposit.

A gold-rich belt was discovered by men digging a foundation, which generated into a gold rush that led to the destruction of properties under construction.

Illegal miners resorted to night gold hunting, after police fired gun shots and threw teargas to disperse the miners from scavenging for gold.

Property owners said they are now seized with land reclamation for a gold rush they never benefitted from.

The Ministry of Mines and Mining Development has since instructed property owners to apply for prospective licenses to halt the gold hunt from their premises.

More than a kilogramme of gold was hunted from the area which is now under tight security.