DA NAMES GAUTENG MINES OPERATING WITHOUT WATER LICENSES

Thomas Walters MPL

DA Gauteng Agriculture and Rural Development spokesman

There are thirteen mines in Gauteng operating without valid water licenses. The names of the mines are as follows:

Simmer & Jack, Mintails SA, Goldfields-Driefontein, Harmony Gold, Gold View, Mooiplaats Colliery, Imbabala Colliery, Vunene Colliery, Umlabo Colliery, Central Rand Gold, Knights Gold, Glen Douglas and Leliefontein Colliery.

The names of these mines were revealed in a parliamentary question posed by the Democratic Alliance (DA) in National Parliament. For the residents of Gauteng this failure of government means that there are potentially thirteen mines operating without a sound preventative regulatory system to preserve and protect water resources.

This absence of a critical law-enforcement system may further aggravate the Acid Mine Drainage (AMD) crisis in Gauteng, critically polluting diminishing water resources, where for years government has failed to act effectively.

I call on the Gauteng Premier, Nomvula Mokonyane, to pressure the National Department of Water Affairs (DWA) to take strong action in enforcing these water licences. The Gauteng Provincial Legislature should have public hearings on the consequences of water pollution with particular emphasis on pollution by mines operating without valid water licences.

For thirteen mines to operate without these licences is a disgrace and an indictment of the highest order of the government’s will to preserve water resources for future generations.

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