Mkhondo coal mine gives 5% ownership to workers

The company made history in an environment where companies are notorious for operating in an area and thereafter leave communities languishing in poverty.


The Kangra coal mine in the Mkhondo area of Mpumalanga has given 5% of the company to its workers to own. 

This 5% will also belong to the community and will be used by the community members to develop their area. 

The mine was bought by a company called Menar last year through their child company called Canyon Coal. They took over operation in December 2018 and soon afterwards mapped out ways to assist in community upliftment. 

The event was attended by hundreds of workers, mining bosses and government officials, including mayor Vusi Motha and was held at the Kangra coal mine in the Mkhondo area a week ago.

Workers were given a day off to be part of the event with their bosses and local community members.

The announcement to own part of a giant mine was made by Menar bosses Mpumelelo Mkhabela and Vuslat Bayoglu on Thursday last week and saw the workers going crazy in celebration. The profits will be held in trusts.

The mine is the first in the history of South Africa to give shares to workers. It follows on the requirements of the Mining Charter Third Version that says workers and community should be given shares in mining businesses. 

“This is a permanent arrangement,” Mkhabela said. 

“For as long as you work at Kangra, you will own shares. If the company makes profits and dividends are declared, you will also benefit from dividends that will accrue to the employee’s trust,” said Mkhabela.

“In the next few months, the legal process to give effect to the allocation will be concluded, but we thought we should make our intentions firmly clear right from the start so that you can assess us against our undertaking,” Bayoglu told the event.

The theme of the programme is “New Beginning” and the company is “changing the narrative for the mutual benefit of all stakeholders,” Bayoglu added. 

Since the 1950s there has been coal mining in the Kangra mine but the newest owners said they are here in order to change the whole game. 

They promise to make sure it deals with the issues raised by the community, including issues of transformation.

They also promised they would put locals first when employing people and training and skills will be offered. 

The mine also promised they will give preferences to historically disadvantaged companies in the procurement of capital goods, services and consumables.

Motha, the area’s mayor, urged the community members not to destroy property, block roads or cause mayhem when angered by officials but instead the proper structures should be used in addressing concerns. 

The mine must also act swiftly when there are concerns, he said, saying they should not wait until the issues spill into ugly confrontation with the communities.

“We must not scare investors off,” the mayor said. 

“The new owners must be given the opportunity to prove themselves. Let’s work with them and let’s contribute to stability in our communities,” Motha urged.

(edited by MLM, with IOL) 

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Mkhondo local newspaper complains of “never-ending potholes”

 

The newspaper says it has registered its grievances with officials.


A local newspaper in the Mkhondo area of Mpumalanga has complained about the “never-ending potholes” in the area.

In its March edition, the Excelsior News said it has now registered a complaint with the Mkhondo municipality to look at the issue.

It reported that Botha Street, where there is the Alpha And Omega Primary School is “scattered with potholes”.

“There are certain areas in town that have become known for the bad state of the road surface, and when such an area is next to a school the problem becomes even bigger,” the paper said.

Mkhondo local newspaper complains of "never-ending potholes"

“As this is close to a primary school, there are many children walking in this area that are young and do not yet understand the dangers that vehicles pose for pedestrians,” the paper said.

SEE ALSO: Sasekani Manzini ordered to pay R450k in pothole damage

It says the large number of potholes can cause drivers to loose control and plunge into children.

“Even though the school makes big efforts to ensure that none of the learners cross the road without supervision during school hours, a young child can still play here after school while waiting for parents.  An accident can occur and injure a child,” the paper said.

Officials at the municipality promised to attend to the matter.

SEE ALSO: Parly committee disappointed at Gert Sibande district’s collapsing water waste infrastructure

(edited by MLM)

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ANC condemns attempted killing of Mkhondo mayor

Party spokesman Sabelo Sikhakhane says they haven’t established whether the attempt on his life was politically motivated, related to family or anything but says it’s wrong for anyone to want to kill anybody “regardless whether that person is right or wrong”.


The ANC in the Gert Sibande has condemned the attempt to kill Mkhondo local municipality mayor Vusi Motha.

Motha is also the regional deputy chairman of the ANC in the Gert Sibande region.

The African Times reported that Motha escaped uninjured when unknown people fired bullets at his car on the Sunday night of 14 May 2017.

He was on his way home in Mkhondo.

SEE ALSO: Inside the deadly Standerton protest

Provincial police spokesman Brigadier Leonard Hlathi confirmed the incident, appealing to anybody with information to come forward and assist the cops trace the perpetrators.

“As the ANC we condemn the incident in the strongest possible term,” regional spokesman Sabelo Sikhakhane said.

“The attempt to kill anybody is wrong, regardless whether that person [being targeted] is right or wrong,” he said.

The police in Mkhondo are investigating a case of attempted murder.

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The African Times reported that a picture posted on a WhatsApp group showed Motha’s car riddled with bullet holes on the passenger side.

Motha expects delegates to elect him to retain his post as the deputy chairman of the ANC in the Gert Sibande region when a regional congress is convened in no time.

Both chairman Muzi Chirwa and secretary Audrey Maleka have been endorsed by all branches to retain their respective seats.

(edited by MLM)

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