Amadiba Crisis Committee 2019-01- 23: Transworld Mineral and Energy (TEM) today distributed food parcels in Xolobeni preparing for “scientific survey”.
Yesterday, we reported about the unannounced arrival in Sigidi of a blue and white helicopter equipped with ‘geophysical’ gear under it, scaring people and livestock. People in Mdatya village reported about a second red and white helicopter. It also flew low over the coast today.
Today around 12.30, a big truck marked with “Bargain Wholesalers” logo appeared in Xolobeni. It stopped close to MRC mining director Zamile Qunya’s house. Food parcels were handed out by Amadiba chief Lunga Baleni, a director of Transworld (TEM), and Zamokwakhe ‘Basheen’ Qunya, brother of Zamile, director in one of his companies and “tourism officer” at Mbizana municipality. Lunga was reported telling people that “they must vote”.
The free handing out of food parcels was not announced, but to households neighbouring the Qunya homestead. They came with wheelbarrows and could take home loads of 10kg parcels of rice, sugar and flour.
The campaign for Mantashe’s survey about Xolobeni mining has started. The mining lobby is preparing for ‘How-to-sell-a-City’ MEC Oscar Mabuyane’s “scientific survey”.
In a letter to SA Human Rights Commission yesterday, our lawyers among other things pointed to:
“The acts of aggression and blank shots fired by the SAPS inside and outside the marquee tent [on 16 January] when members were protesting after closure of the meeting;
b. The ongoing threats of violence and safety threats made in public affecting the rights of expression and organisation;
c. The safety of members and their families and the security of their livelihoods;
d. The DMR announced survey or referendum.
3 The concern about a proposed survey/referendum relates to the fact that there is no basis in law for a “survey”, the right to say NO judgment of the North Gauteng High Court, the MPRDA or IPILRA, that it is ill-defined and provocative and that the law, including the minister’s appeal should be allowed to run its course.
4 As agreed, the community’s representatives would like to meet with your delegation to discuss these and other matters and support you in monitoring and investigating the situation on an ongoing basis from a human rights perspective.”
We have information that the EC Human Rights Commission will visit our community soon. Tomorrow, the people of Xolobeni will assembly at Umgungundlovu Komkhulu to discuss the situation.
We demand an explanation from TEM, from DMR and the Mbizana municipality – given that a government employee took part in the hand-out. Was the truckload of food parcels paid by the government or the mining company?