By Innocent Kurira
HIGHLANDERS FC received a perfect Christmas present from the Government through the Ministry of Mines and Mining Development, who approved relevant paperwork for Bosso to start operations at their gold mining claim in Inyathi, Bubi District.
Highlanders chairman Kenneth Mhlophe said he was over the moon with granting of the licence, which he believes will change the face of the club.
“As the Bosso family, we are grateful to the Government of Zimbabwe for their support. Personally, l am over the moon. This is a Christmas present from the President of the country himself and it has come at the right time.
“I would like to thank President Emmerson Mnangagwa as well as the brains behind the gold mining initiative, Bulawayo Provincial Affairs and Devolution Minister Judith Ncube, because without them, this wouldn’t have been possible,” said Mhlophe.
“We received all the paperwork on Monday, meaning we are now good to go. This is a great income-generating initiative for the club. and I am almost certain that this mining claim will improve our cash flow, as we try to turn the club into a successful business,” he said.
After realising that Highlanders had been surviving on the benevolence of well-wishers, Minister Ncube pushed for Highlanders to get a mining claim to ease the club’s financial woes.
The claim came as a result of the Visit Zimbabwe Promotion Campaign; a movement which seeks to leverage on the sports and tourism sectors to market the country as a premier tourist destination.
The mining venture is a first by a local club not owned by a mining company and should improve the club’s liquidity if run properly.
Members and well-wishers have helped Bosso remain afloat during the Covid-19 lockdown by buying groceries for and paying players and coaches’ wages after the club lost principal sponsor NetOne.
Not only did Bosso lose their sponsor, but they also lost some players, including chief striker Prince Dube, who was sold to Tanzanian side Azam, Denzel Khumalo and Brian Banda who joined league champions FC Platinum.
Despite being inactive for a whole year in which they only played one game, the Castle Challenge Cup against FC Platinum in March before the pandemic struck, Mhlophe’s executive managed to secure a three-year deal with England-based sportswear provider On The Ball (OTB) worth US$100 000 per year for the supply of new playing and training kits as well as replica jerseys for fans. The Chronicle