by Stephen Jakes
Minister of Mines and Mining Development Winston Chitando has told parliament that despite the government of Zimbabwe owning 37% shares at the Hwange Colliery, the company is listed under the Zimbabwe and London Stock Exchange.
He said it is not a Government owned entity.
“Hwange Colliery is quoted on the Zimbabwe and London Stock Exchanges and Government is the single largest shareholder. That is the first thing. So, I think let us first clarify that point. Government is the single largest shareholder, owning 37% of the shares,” Chitando said.
“The second issue is to state that despite the 37% shareholding – were it not for interventions by Government, Hwange would be down and under by now. The third point, because in terms of the scheme of arrangement which was entered into last year, Government despite it being the 37% shareholder, funded all the capital which was required in terms of that scheme.”
Chitando said over the period of the last five years, the employees have gone through a lot in terms of unpaid salaries which totaled 33 months.
“What is important though is to look at what is the way forward in terms of the recovery of Hwange Colliery Company. There is a scheme in which (1) the employees are being paid their backlog of salaries and (b) there is a clear turnaround policy which entails commencement of underground operations in May and commencement of coke operations by the end of the year. This is on the SCGC battery and then commencement of coke operations on the main auto-Simon Cavs battery- all these initiatives will see Hwange going into positive cash flows and serving its debts and obligations which have accumulated over the years and also timeous payment of creditors and employees,” he said.
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