Ishemunyoro Chingwere, Harare Bureau
The Zimbabwe Consolidated Diamond Company Pvt (Ltd), will next year upgrade security systems around its precious stones to avoid cases of theft that prejudice the State of millions of dollars annually.
This follows reports last week that four ZCDC employees appeared in court on allegations of conniving to smuggle fake diamonds into the company’s sorting house to switch with high quality diamonds.
ZCDC chief executive Dr Morris Mpofu, said the miner will “invest heavily” in security and tap into world best diamond security standards.
This, he said, is in line with the company’s thrust to tap into the best international diamond value chain that has seen mimicking the Botswana diamond value chain in an effort to capitalise on the precious gem stones after the country lost considerable revenue due to inadequacies and inefficiencies.
“ZCDC will invest heavily and will go far and wide to tap into world class product security standards to establish systems and processes that ensure that Zimbabwe’s diamond product is safe and realises significant value to the country’s fiscus,” said Dr Mpofu.
“While I can’t comment on that particular case as it is sub judice, it is, (however), important that ZCDC as a company puts in place measures that secure the country’s diamonds against theft, measures that ensure total compliance with the Kimberly Process Certification Scheme that Zimbabwe fully subscribes to.
“In 2018 ZCDC is intensifying its onslaught on such people who were engaged in 2016 from previous miners and are having a bad appetite to steal the country’s diamonds.
“ZCDC will use all available technological systems to create a hands free diamond recovery environment that is fool proof and preserves the country’s valuable resource. We have already established a High level Security Risk Management ad-hoc committee chaired by the chief operating officer to come up with best international practice in product security,” he said.
The company, Dr Mpofu said, will also enhance its staff recruitment policy to a level where it will ensure that only trustworthy people are employed to work near the precious stones.
“In the spirit of individual integrity, our recruitment process has also been heightened to ensure that only the honest and well-bred are engaged in diamond sorting, and valuation, where there is high security risk,” said Dr Mpofu.
Zimbabwe has emerged a major player in the diamond sector with potential to supply 25 percent of the world’s gems.
Article Source: The Chronicle