Mining communities lose out on riches

Photo: Alon Skuy / Times Live


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Johannesburg – People living near mines are not benefiting from the profits, the Bench Marks Foundation said on Tuesday.

“(The) concern is that private corporations, often with the support of government leaders, make very large profits while communities suffer high levels of inequality and poverty,” chairperson Jo Seoka said in Johannesburg.

“The situation in Marikana testifies to this.”

Violence flared up at the Lonmin mine, the country’s third biggest platinum mine, in the North West town this week.

“We are not here to speak about the violence, but it is only right that we condemn it,” said Seoka.

The Bench Marks Foundation is an independent, faith-based organisation monitoring how well companies perform in the field of social responsibility.

Seoka said the foundation was concerned about the pollution of air, water and soil by industrial activity such as mining.

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