Two injured as Matobo gold panners clash
TWO men were hospitalised with severe injuries following clashes pitting illegal gold panners and mine workers at Nugget Mine in Matobo on Tuesday night.
One of the men allegedly lost nearly all his teeth while the other one was axed on the head and left for dead.
Nugget Mine workers said the “war” started at about 5:30PM and ended at 11PM.
A woman alleged to be girlfriend to a mine employee triggered the latest fight, one of many clashes between the two sides in recent months.
Nugget Mine manager Mr Akim Rabson said two mine employees are lucky to be alive after they were severely assaulted with one of them losing nearly all his teeth.
Mr Rabson said on Wednesday that illegal miners always fight against mine workers but described the latest incident as nasty. “It’s not the first time this has happened. They’re always fighting over minor issues. We’re told that yesterday’s fight started after one of the rippers (illegal miners) from Insuza poured beer on a girlfriend of one of the mine employees. That ignited a full-blown war but the biggest problem is that these guys have outstanding grudges and they use any opportunity to fight,” said Mr Rasbon.
He blamed the police officers for not taking action to restore order. “The illegal miners have disappeared but there is a lot of corruption in this country. The illegal miners always know when the police are coming and they disappear into the bush,” said Mr Rabson. — @nqotshili.