BULAWAYO, Friday, August 5,1966 — A suggestion of favouritism in allocating mining sites caused an outburst of complaints at a 30-strong meeting of Wankie and district Small Workers’ Association. But this was the businesses meeting, which was over before Deputy Minister for Mines, Mr IB Dillon, arrived.
The remark that sparked the complaints was that “certain interests” had been allowed to mine in Wankie Game Reserve. This caused dissatisfaction among those small workers who had applications for this area turned down.
Mr Dillon, who was accompanied by a West German mining engineer, Dr H Poetter, who is from Essen said he hoped Wankie would nominate a delegate to the district advisory board which was sitting in Bulawayo.
These boards, he added, had made easier the liaison between the Mines and Mines Department and the small worker.
“The industry is expanding through the small holder worker more than ever before but there is a desperate shortage of professional officers and knowledgeable small workers”, said Mr Dillon.
He was giving serious consideration to preventing undeveloped claims being held for speculative purposes. He recommended the self-help scheme, such as in Filabusi, where storekeepers, farmers and the public had subscribed £5 000 towards a promising mining proposition.
This had brought further £5 000 from the Government. Dr Poetter who is from Essen, said he had been impressed by Wankie’s coal reserves and the efficient methods of mining. Dr R Hendry was chairman.