According to Alex Bell, efforts by Zimbabwean civil society groups to push a human rights agenda at the international diamond trade watchdog, the Kimberley Process (KP), are being undermined by some of the key beneficiaries of the sector, including ZANU PF.
Bell states that the KP’s civil society wing have been fighting a drawn out battle to pressure the monitoring group to reform, in order to better fight diamond trade-linked human rights abuses.
He further says that the most recent plenary session of the KP again failed to take these reforms on board, with the views expressed by the civil society members of the body instead being criticised as ‘malicious’.
To read the article titled, “ZANU PF involved in undermining civil society diamond fight,” click here.Source:SW Radio Africa
Mining magnate, Patrice Motsepe, has been given a memorandum of demands by over 400 angry residents living next to Modikwa, a platinum mine in the Greater Tubatse Municipality and also the subsidiary of Motsepe’s African Rainbow Minerals group.
The community demand that Motsepe should empower them economically because, “We have been frustrated for a long time because Motsepe's mines are making huge profits, but our people remain disadvantaged."
According to the group leader, Godfrey Letlaka, the community established Section 21, a representative group to act in their interest.
To read article titled, “Angry mob takes to Motsepe's offices,” click here.Source:Sunday World
The Council for the Advancement of the South African Constitution (CASAC) has warned that the credibility of the Marikana Commission of Inquiry will be tainted if all parties are not represented or given adequate chance to present their case.
CASAC’s Lawson Naidoo says that government instituted the commission to find out what occurred last year at the Lonmin Marikana mine, which left mineworkers and policemen dead, adding that, "In order to enable Judge Farlam to execute his mandate, the responsibility lies with the government to make the funds available."
On 20 August 2013, the Constitutional Court dismissed the miners' application to force government to pay their legal costs, a move which has added the additional stress to the victim’s whose legal teams may have to withdraw if the legal costs are not met.
To read the article titled, “Credibility of Farlam Commission on the line: CASAC,” click here.Source:SABC News
Civil society organisation, the Hola Bon Renaissance (HBR) Foundation, has written to the Lonmin Platinum to ask the mine to pay the legal cost of their employees at the Marikana Commission of Inquiry.
HBR chairperson, Bontshitswe Mothopeng, says Lonmin has a social responsibility towards its employees.
“If Lonmin is very serious, it must be able to fund the legal team that will be representing the workers and the injured workers. The same way as government is funding its employees, Lonmin must also do so since it has not apologised to South Africans about the internal matters that ended up costing lives,” explains Mothopeng.
To read the article titled, “Lonmin must pay Marikana legal fees: HBR chairperson,” click hereSource:SABC News
The Legal Resources Centre (LRC) lawyers expressed concern about the Farlam Commission of Inquiry's repeated postponements.
In a press statement, LRC’s George Bizos, point out that, "We, the LRC, are concerned about maintaining public confidence in the effectiveness and credibility of the [inquiry], which could be seriously eroded by repeated postponements."
Bizos states that the LRC supports the call by Dali Mpofu, for the miners arrested and wounded during last year's unrest at Lonmin's platinum mine in Marikana, North West, to get State funding.
To read the article titled, “LRC concerned about Marikana commission postponements,” click here.
The Southern Africa Resource Watch (SARW) says that the Kimberley Process (KP) must implement urgent and substantial reforms if it hopes to remain relevant and play any real role in building a cleaner and more transparent global diamond trade in future.
SARW director Dr Claude Kabemba, points out that, “Now that most diamond-linked conflicts have ended, the KP will only remain relevant if it is given the mandate to monitor the entire diamond industry chain.
Dr Kabemba says the KP has played an important role over the past decade in resolving conflicts linked to the diamond trade, adding however, that there is no doubt that it has to be reformed.
To read the article titled, “The world has changed, the Kimberley Process should too: civil society says KP must Reform - or lose all relevance,” click here.Source:All Africa
The Democratic Left (DLF) has urged Anglo Platinum (Amplats) workers to fight their planned retrenchment.
The DLF spokesperson, Mazibuko Jara, points out that the DLF fully supports the decision of all Amplats workers to resist, fight and stop the retrenchments.
Jara states that workers' representatives briefed the national steering committee of the DFL about a decision to resist the retrenchments, adding that government should use its power to ensure that no single job is lost at Amplats.
To read the article titled, “Fight Amplats job cuts, urges body,” click here.Source:Fin24
Anti-apartheid activist, Mamphela Ramphele, has warned unrest in the mining and agricultural sectors will continue if efforts are not made to change the industries' dynamics.
Speaking at the mining indaba in Cape Town, the Gold Fields chair and struggle stalwart, said that, “It's time to think differently … the mining industry has no option but to make a fresh start [if it hopes to survive]."
Ramphele said it is important for business government and labour to heed the wake-up call of the unrest and the ‘bombs in South Africa waiting to go off’.
To read the article title, “Mining and agriculture must change to survive, says Ramphele,” click here.Source:Mail & Guardian
An environmental NGO, Federation for a Sustainable Environment, has laid criminal charges against mining group Platmin, a company operating an open cast mine on the doorstep of the Pilanesberg Nature Reserve.
Federation for a Sustainable Environment director, Mariette Liefferink, says they have brought charges because the mine does not have a water licence.
The mine is situated in a proposed heritage park that would link the Pilanesberg and the Madikwe nature reserves with each other and create a 90-kilometre long migration route for the Big Five.
To read the article titled, “NGO lays criminal charges against mining group Platmin,” click here.Source:Sowetan Live
Doctors without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontierès (MSF), the South African Police Services and the Musina Local Municipality have set up a base at Dongola, Limpopo.
The base aimed at providing shelter to more than 150 flood victims, some of which have been stranded on rooftops in the greater Mapungubwe area and rescued by military helicopter.
Meanwhile, Coal of Africa Limited, a mining company operating in the area, has forced to halt its operations.
To read the article titled, “Limpopo floods halt coal mine operations,” click here.Source:News24