Informal miners in Kimberley also wish to lay claim to municipal land that has been earmarked for a brick-making and housing project.
ARTISANAL miners in Kimberley also wish to lay claim to municipal land that has been earmarked for a brick-making and housing project.
A group of artisanal miners attended a Sol Plaatje Municipality special council meeting on Wednesday, which was held to discuss a proposal to reinstate a partnership with Kimberley Rehabilitation and Development (KRD) to enable them to rehabilitate unused mine dumps.
A representative for the artisanal miners and Batho Pele Artisanal miners, Lucky Seekoei, stated that the “mineral-rich ground” was a ticket out of poverty for local miners.
“Miners have found 20-carat and 30-carat diamonds on this ground,” said Seekoei.
He added that numerous pleas to the Department of Mineral Resources, Sol Plaatje Municipality and the Premier’s Office to intervene in their struggle for economic emancipation and social development had produced no tangible results.
EFF Frances Baard regional chairperson Vusi Raphoto stated that artisanal miners were “shot at by mine security, while KRD was permitted to occupy land without permission by Sol Plaatje Municipality”.
“If that is the case, then we encourage artisanal miners to also mine on the same ground. Black economic empowerment was overlooked. What about the people from Greenpoint, Beefmaster and Samaria?”
He also questioned if there was political interference involved in fast-tracking the project.