Mining and biofuels are competing with agriculture for land in South Africa, putting pressure on farmers to become more efficient, particularly through the use of technology.
Head of agribusiness at Standard Bank, Nico Groenewald, notes that as a result, South Africa’s commercial farmers are consolidating into fewer and larger operations to achieve economies of scale and remain profitable.
Groenewald states that the rising use of biofuels adds to the challenges and has to be balanced with food security, adding that biofuels will create demand for maize and sorghum that did not exist before.
To read the article titled, “Mining and biofuels ‘drive the need for more efficient farms’,” click here.Source:BDLive
Aid organisation, Gift of the Givers is expected to visit the mining areas again where they have been providing striking workers with food parcels for the past five weeks.
The organisation says though it will continue to provide aid to the most affected families, they have to now dig deep into their coffers to keep on supplying aid.
Its spokesperson, Emily Thomas, says it is frustrating that the negotiations to end the strike remain at loggerheads, this is despite concerned parties reaching an agreement on the latest wage offer.
To read the article titled, “Gift of the Givers to provide aid to striking workers,” click here.Source:SABC News
A new report by the research group, Research on Money and Finance, says platinum mines can afford to pay workers more.
The report, entitled ‘Demanding the Impossible? Platinum Mining Profits and Wage Demands in Context’, states that huge profits in the past decade were given to investors while workers benefited little.
The report further notes that if this had not occurred, workers could be earning the wage they are currently striking for.
To read the article titled, “Super-profits, but not for mineworkers,” click here.Source:Mail and Guardian
The South African Institute of Race Relations (SAIRR) has warned that the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in South Africa risks declining below two percent this year.
SAIRR chief economist, Ian Cruickshanks, says that the decline will negatively affect government revenue, infrastructure development and job creation in the country.
Cruickshanks, who is of the view that the ongoing platinum strike would trigger the decline, states that, “Clearly we getting no input from mines and if we have a look at Commerce and Industry in South Africa, the confidence level, business confidence is at a very low level.”
To read the article titled, “SA GDP risks two percent decline,” click here.Source:SABC News
Platinum producer, Lonmin, has questioned some aspects of non-governmental organisations (NGOs) handing over food to families of striking mineworkers on the platinum belt, while praising the human rights initiative itself.
Lonmin chief executive officer, Ben Magara, says the NGOs are exploiting the plight of the 80 000 mineworkers, who have been on strike since January on a no-work no-pay basis.
The Marikana Support Group, humanitarian organisation Gift of the Givers and other groups have been supplying food relief to the miners since early this week.
To read the article titled, “NGOs are exploiting plight of mineworkers: Lonmin,” click here.Source:SABC News
North West Premier, Thandi Modise, has urged South Africans to respect the role that civil society organisations (CSOs) play in the delivery of services.
Addressing delegates at the National NPO Summit, which was held under the theme ‘Making Service Delivery Work for the People’ in Mahikeng, North West, Modise stressed that, “Functional democracy depends on civil society.”
She also emphasised the need to encourage the participation of CSOs at the ward level, adding that this approach will contribute to the idea of people owning their own programmes, which is supported by the National Development Plan.
In addition, Modise expressed her disappointment with the tendency of certain mining companies in the North West province for neglecting the conditions that mine workers and their communities live under because “Government on its own cannot deliver.”
For more about the National NPO Summit on Service Delivery, refer to www.ngopulse.org/blogs/npos-democracy-and-service-delivery.Source:SANGONeT
Southern Africa Resource Watch (SARW) says the government must keep an eye on Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) and act decisively to protect Zambians' interests in the mine.
Commenting on the protests by scores of people in London against Vedanta Resources, the majority shareholder in Konkola Copper Mines, SARW country coordinator, Edward Lange, says the mineral resources in Zambia are being literally looted because the mining communities and the country at large are not seeing tangible benefits.
Lange says that KCM is expected to show remorse and take a re-look at its past record in relation to the revelations and make amends with the people not only in Zambia, but across the globe.
To read the article titled, “ARW urges govt to keep an eye on KCM,” click here .Source:The Post
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
Thousands of striking miners have gathered at an Amplats platinum mine outside Rustenburg to receive food parcels from a non-governmental organisation, Gift of the Givers.
The organisation intervened after reports surfaced that members of the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU) are going hungry as the four-month strike drags on.
Gift of the Givers spokesperson, Emily Thomas, says they are working with the Marikana Community Support group to identify families mostly affected by the on-going strike, adding that the organisation will continue with initiatives to alleviate poverty in the area.
To read the article titled, “Miners receive food parcels from Gift of the Givers,” click here.Source:SABC News