The Geology section currently consists of three geologists and three geological technicians.

GEOLOGISTS

Mr N.G Chibaira

Ms F. Mafirakureva

Mr T. L. Mutseka

GEOLOGICAL TECHNICIANS

Mr L. Dube

Mr A. O. Tafirenyika

Miss R. Musinga

SERVICES PROVIDED BY DEPARTMENT

  • Providing geological technical assistance to small scale miners in the province in the form of
  1. Mapping of prospecting trenches.
  2. Systematic sampling of ore body / reef
  3. On site advice.
  • Evaluation of ore bodies.
  • Sample/ mineral identification.
  • Identification of potential mineral deposits.

 

MAJOR PROJECTS OF INTEREST IN THE PROVINCE

An exploration campaign for coal is currently underway in Beitbridge district. When the project was visited by the geologist Mr N.G Chibaira and Mr L Dube (geological technician) on 30 August 2016 it was observed that the exploration project to evaluate the Tuli coal deposit is quite extensive and detailed and results that will be obtained from the exercise would be reliable and more valuable in reserve estimation and evaluation. On the time of the visit 24 0f the 45 planned vertical holes were drilled. Assessment of the drill core shows that the coal seams intersected range in the lower grade power coal category though traces of transition into the more economic coking coal category was observed.

GEO-TOURISM

MATOPOS

The Matopos national park forms the core of the Matopos hill an area of granite kopjes and wooded valleys commencing some 35 km south of Bulawayo in Matobo district. The hills were formed over 2 billion years ago with granite being forced to the surface. This has eroded to produce smooth ‘whale back’ dwalas and broken kopjes strewn with boulders and interspersed with thickets of vegetation. Mzilikazi founder of the Ndebele nation gave the area its name, meaning ‘Bald Heads’.

The hills cover an area of about 3100km2 of which 424km2 is national park. The park extends along the Thuli, Mtsheleli, Maleme and Mpopoma river valleys. Part of the national park is set aside as a 100km2 game park which has been stocked with game including the white rhinoceros.

The Matopos hills are composed entirely of granite, making up the Matopos batholith. The granite weathers into fantastic shapes such as the balancing rocks known as mother and child Kopje. Between the Granite Mountains, narrow valleys form. These are often swampy valleys known as dambos or vleis due to runoff from whaleback mountains. The valleys form the headwaters of the Maleme, Mpopoma and Mtsheleli rivers and the source of the Thuli River is just east of the park.

 

 

Mother and Child Kopje in the game, Matobo National Park.

HISTORY ATTACHED TO MATOPOS

The hills were the scene of the famous indaba between white settlers and Ndebele leaders in 1896-the second Matabele war known in Zimbabwe as the First Chimurenga which ended in the assassination of the Mlimo by Frederick Russell Burnham, the American scout in one of the Matobo caves. Upon learning the death of the Mlimo, Cecil John Rhodes boldly walked alone and unarmed into this Ndebele stronghold and persuaded the impi to lay down their arms.

Even today a great deal of the pottery and artifacts found on cave floors and most of the clay grain bins in the hills are remnants from the 1896 rebellion era. There are other reminders too, bronze plaques dotted here and there in various hills marking the sites of armed forts or brief skirmishes.

Cecil Rhodes, Leander Starr Jameson, and several other leading early white settlers including Allan and all the members of the Shangani Patrol killed in the First Matabele war are buried on the summit of Malindidzimu, the ‘hill of the spirits’.

 

Cecil John Rhodes tomb on Malindidzimu.

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