A collection of stories and comments in the wake of the assassination of Sikhosiphi ‘Bazooka’ Rhadebe, anti-mining activist.
Numsa condemns murder of Wild Coast anti-mining activist
The execution style killing of a leader of the Wild Coast anti-mining campaign has been condemned by the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa.
Numsa said in its statement that the anti-miners are under attack from powerful capitalist interests in league with local thugs.
John Clarke and an open letter to the Public Protector
In response to the murder, social worker John Clarke told Fin24 on Wednesday that he will be writing an open letter to the Public Protector following a lack of investigation by police into a previous case relating to Rhadebe, who allegedly had refused to accept a bribe over mining rights.
“As a result of the investigation going cold, a man has now lost his life,” he said, adding that he had been tasked by the Amadiba Crisis Committee in his role a social worker to ensure justice was served.
Mark Caruso of Mineral Commodities responds
“This company will not engage in any activity that incites violence … [and] will cooperate fully with any investigations into this incident,”said Mineral Commodities’ executive chairman Mark Caruso .
Between the Chains
The proponents of mining speak of the dearth of jobs and infrastructure in their justification for wanting to violate the windswept sand dunes along the Sikombe and Mtentu rivers. Since 2004, when Australia’s Mineral Resources Commodities first applied for a licence to mine the dunes, this side has pointed to the black stripes on the beach sand as evidence of the riches that lie unexploited. They argue the mine would bring about much-needed jobs to lift the locals out of poverty.
But the opponents of mining — the majority of people in the villages directly affected by the proposed mine — point to their well-fed livestock, green fields growing their food and favourite smoke, and the nearby tourism businesses as the most sustainable ways to keep hunger away.
Between the Chains: Another Ngquza revolt by Sikonathi Mantshantsha, Financial Mail deputy editor.
The Robinson/Caruso connection, and the Promise of Justice
A book launch for ‘The Promise of Justice’ in a theatre whose stones have a tale of injustice to tell. It is a story that does not flatter President Zuma or the mining industry, but shows that human rights must trump mining rights if we want a better state for the South African nation in the future.
The “moral equivalent of mining Ayers Rock for granite”
Anne Susskind writes for the Sydney MOrning Herald:
A Perth mining company, Mineral Commodities (MRC), is at the centre of a simmering conflict in South Africa, and has been accused of creating divisions and fomenting violence in an unspoilt and “idyllic” coastal community in the Eastern Cape.
At stake is a 22-kilometre-by-1.5-kilometre strip of red sand dunes on the pristine “wild coast”, which MRC says is home to the world’s 10th-largest heavy mineral deposit – minerals such as ilmenite, rutile and zircon, used to manufacture titanium dioxide pigments.
Read more:Perth Miner
Another Mineral Commodities project
Mineral Commodities is involved in another highly controversial project 30km from Vredendal in the Western Cape.
The Daily Vox provides a short summary going back to 2003 and the shooting of Mandoda Ndovela, a headman from Mpindweni on the Wild Coast.