High Court rules in favour of Xolobeni community in historic mining rights case

The minister of mineral resources will have to obtain full and formal consent from the Xolobeni community prior to granting mining rights, the Pretoria High Court ordered on Thursday.

READ MORE: Would-be Xolobeni miner has ‘broken’ West Coast promises

The Amadiba Crisis Committee launched a court battle against the department of mineral resources and Australian company Transworld Energy and Mineral Resources (TEM) over mining rights earlier this year.

READ MORE: We will die for our land, say angry Xolobeni villagers as dune mining looms

TEM, which is the fifth respondent in the matter, had filed an application for rights to mine the titanium-rich sands at the Umgungundlovu area of Xolobeni on the Wild Coast.

In her judgment, Judge Annali Basson declared that the mineral resources minister must obtain consent from the community, as the holder of rights on land, prior to granting any mining right to TEM.

In her conclusion, she stated that while the informal rights of customary communities were previously not protected by law, they now had the right to decide what happens with their land.


“As such they may not be deprived of their land without their consent,” said Basson in her judgment.—News 24

Subscribe to the M&G

These are unprecedented times, and the role of media to tell and record the story of South Africa as it develops is more important than ever.

The Mail & Guardian is a proud news publisher with roots stretching back 35 years, and we’ve survived right from day one thanks to the support of readers who value fiercely independent journalism that is beholden to no-one. To help us continue for another 35 future years with the same proud values, please consider taking out a subscription.

Alex Mitchley
Alex Mitchley
South African Journalist at News24

Related stories

Advertising
Advertising

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…

The best local and international journalism

handpicked and in your inbox every weekday