Johanne Marange Apostolic Church super dad, Philemon Johwanu Kaiboni Kambeni, has been allocated eight houses by Anjin diamond mining firm after staging a month-long housing protest.
Kambeni has been squatting in a compound with his 14 wives since he was relocated to Arda Transau to make way for diamond mining operations in Chiadzwa.
He was relocated by Chinese diamond miners, Anjin, from his plush Chiadzwa home, where he was comfortably living with his family.
The 89-year-old Kambeni’s 35-member-family, which had been homeless since February 27, 2011, was given eight houses by the Chinese miner last Saturday to accommodate eight of his 14 wives. The other wives will be given their houses soon, officials said.
Confirming the latest development, Mutare district administrator Cosmas Chiringa, said his office had ensured the family got the help they needed.
“We are still working on giving each of the six remaining families a house,” Chiringa said.
Afia, one of the wives, however said 14 houses would fall short of their expectations by one as they hoped that their husband would also get his own house. He had his own housing unit back in Chiadzwa.
Explaining the allocation criterion, Afia said, “At the moment, only those who had camped outside are the ones who got the houses because six others and our husband are still in the compound,” As things stand, Kambeni will have to contend with floating around his eight wives.
The Chinese-owned diamond mining company had built the family an eight-bedroomed house with 14 detached thatched kitchens, 14 toilets and 14 bathrooms which the family refused to occupy as six of the wives and their 20 children had no room, forcing them to live in squalor in a compound.
Anjin investments, which is in a joint venture with the government, had been getting a lot of bad press because of the way it was handling the dispute.
Last December, the family was arrested by Odzi police for unlawful entry after they invaded another Chinese mining concern — Jinan’s 14 houses.
The family has been camped outside Anjin’s houses.