Zimbabwe's Deputy Mines Minister has leveled serious accusations at the nation's armed forces, accusing it of colluding to trade the country's rough diamonds for weapons, Rough and Polished reports. Gift Chimanikire of the Movement for Democratic Change Party said that the nation was not earning as much as it should for its rough diamonds, because instead of being sold on the open market, they are being bartered for arms.
The diamond company doing the most mining activity in the Marange region, Anjin,
is owned by China and the Zimbabwean Army in a 90%-10% split, and it is
difficult to account for the dollar value of the army's share of the
gems, since they are traded for weapons, according to Chimanikire. The
Deputy Mines Minister said that as of 2 years ago, Anjin had amassed 5.8
million carats of rough diamonds that were not brought to tender in
Chimanikire recommended a change in the way diamonds were sorted in
the country in order to quash corruption, according to Rough and
Polished. The Deputy Minister criticized Zimbabwe's practice of sorting
diamonds at the country's International Airport and advocated for the
Zimbabwe Revenue Authority to audit transactions where the diamonds are
produced to begin with.