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Concerns Over South Africa's Ability to Manage Mining Industry Properly

In South Africa the National Union of Minerworkers is worried that the Department of Mineral Resources (DRM) may be unable to fully regulate the mining industry in the nation. In its national executive committee meet, on Tuesday, it said that it had serious concerns about the DRM being able to handle the new online system that it had opted for.

The NUM committee said that while it welcomed and supported the new licensing regime and the administration of unallocated strategic minerals by the new online system that had been introduced by the department it was worried about the actual implementation of the new regulations.

As an example in support of its case the NUM cited the Imbabala mine in Ermelo where despite the lapse of mining rights the company was continuing to mine. It had even converted an open cast mine into an underground mining operation without the necessary permissions. Still the DMR was not taking any corrective action against the company.

The general secretary of the Num Frans Baleni said that the trade union had found a lot of rot in the mining industry especially with regard to the operators. Many of them were no compliant with the law and were either mining illegally without a permit or were mining underground without a permit.

The launch of the online system to administer the mineral resources which took place last month is now the only way to get permits for prospecting and mining operations. This would help rule out irregularities in awarding permits but would not help blatant flaunting of the rules.

Joel Scanlon

Written by

Joel Scanlon

Joel emigrated to Australia in 1995 and worked for five years in the mining industry as an exploration geotechnician, using GIS mapping and CAD software. Upon moving to the North Coast of NSW, Australia Joel worked as a graphic designer for a leading consultancy firm. After that, he ran a successful business providing web services to businesses along the eastern seaboard of Australia. During this time, he developed and launched News-Medical.Net. Joel has been working with AZoNetwork since the company was founded in 2000.

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