Tags: AF | South Africa | Activist Killed

South Africa: Appeal for Calm after Killing of Activist

Monday, 28 March 2016 09:14 AM

JOHANNESBURG (AP) — The South African government has sent a team to try to reduce tensions in an area where people are divided over a plan by an Australian company to mine titanium. An anti-mining activist was shot dead there last week.

Police are investigating the death of Sikhosiphi Rhadebe, who was killed last Tuesday at his home in the Xolobeni area of Eastern Cape province.

Supporters of the mine project say it will raise living standards in the region. Opponents want to preserve ancestral land and allege they have been targeted by violence and intimidation.

Rhadebe, also known as "Bazooka," was the chairman of the Amadiba Crisis Committee, an anti-mining group. In a Facebook posting, the group said two men knocked at Rhadebe's door, saying they were police, and then shot him eight times in front of his son.

Rhadebe's funeral is scheduled for Saturday.

South Africa's mineral resources department sent a team to try to reduce tensions in the area on South Africa's east coast.

"We're just trying to engage as quickly and effectively as possible," department spokesman Martin Madlala said Monday.

Mineral Commodities is still conducting "consultations and public participation" as part of its bid to mine dunes in the Xolobeni area, according to the mineral resources department. The department's minister, Mosebenzi Zwane, will decide on the application after a review, it said in a statement.

The Associated Press on Monday called the Perth office of Mineral Commodities, but no one was immediately available to comment.

On its website, Mineral Commodities describes its Xolobeni project, which is being pursued with South African business partners, as "the catalyst for social transformation of one of South Africa's poorest communities."

Follow Christopher Torchia on Twitter at www.twitter.com/torchiachris

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The South African government has sent a team to try to reduce tensions in an area where people are divided over a plan by an Australian company to mine titanium. An anti-mining activist was shot dead there last week.Police are investigating the death of Sikhosiphi Rhadebe,...
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2016-14-28
Monday, 28 March 2016 09:14 AM
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