Circle Cement to rehabilitate limestone quarry

Circle Cement to rehabilitate limestone quarry
Published: 26 July 2007

Circle Cement is working on logistics to reclaim the more than 100-metre deep limestone quarry near Chikurubi Maximum Prison, the Herald Business has learnt.  
 
In an interview, Circle Cement acting managing director Mr Jonathan Shonhiwa said the rehabilitation of the limestone quarry would cost about $10 billion.  
 
Disused quarries, like Epworth’s "Sleeping Pool", have become death traps over the years or convenient dumping grounds for stolen vehicles, stripped of their parts.  
 
But such quarries can be transformed into recreational parks or fisheries, supplying local communities with protein.  
 
"We have several options we are considering to transform this site into something valuable for the people. In Zambia they built a state-of-the-art golf course, while several other countries have constructed shopping malls and upgraded their disused quarries into dams," Mr Shonhiwa said.  
 
"After mining for over 50 years, there is a lot of work that needs to be done and we also have a role to check on the plight of communities here as well," Mr Shonhiwa said.  
 
He stressed that the projects Circle Cement eventually implemented should benefit the communities by, for example, creating employment or boosting key sectors such as agriculture.  
 
"We are still holding consulatations with various experts who are advising us on what we should invest in. We are looking at something that will have a positive impact on communities living close to this area," he said.  
 
Among those expected to benefit are the people of Chishawasha who have lived in the shadow of Circle Cement for 53 years and have had to put up with the accompanying noise and air pollution.  
 
"We will be happy if Circle Cement would plough back into this community by getting the council authority to make this place a proper and habitable settlement," said Mrs Elizabeth Chari, who settled in Chishawasha in 1960.  
 
Earlier this month, the cement maker changed its name to Lafarge Cement Zimbabwe Limited to reflect its majority ownership by  Lafarge.