Oz mining group accused of fraud

From www.iol.co.za

August 16 2009 at 06:47PM

By Fred Kockott

An Australian mining enterprise stands accused of using an allegedly fraudulent certificate of consent containing 3 087 names to try to persuade top South African government officials that there is overwhelmingly community support for proposed heavy minerals mining along the Wild Coast.

"I've seen my name on the certificate of consent, yet I did not sign such consent form, nor do I support the mining," said Sinegugu Zikulu, a leading member of the Amadiba Crisis Committee, which is appealing against the government's granting of mining rights on the Wild Coast to Transworld Energy and Minerals Resources (TEM) - a South African subsidiary of the Australian mining company Mineral Commodities.

Zikulu said the crisis committee was collecting statements from "hundreds of others who do not support the mining, but whose names appear on this certificate".

"There are some people's names on these certificates of consent who are dead, and I'm not talking about people who died in 2008, but who have been dead for 10 to 20 years."

Xolco, a local empowerment grouping with a 26 percent stake in the Xolobeni Mineral Sands Project, told the Department of Minerals and Energy the Amadiba Crisis Committee was "a small faction of the community representing 28 people".

"The greater majority of the people (3 087) resident in the Amadiba administrative area have been consulted over the project and have in writing confirmed their consent to the proposed project," reads Xolco's submission.

This article was originally published on page 6 of Cape Argus on August 16, 2009

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