n South African Journal on Human Rights - Revisiting mining and municipal planning : : case note




The storm swirling around the mining of ancient sand dunes near the town of Mtunzini raises issues that are becoming increasingly prominent as the mining boom facilitated by the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act 28 of 2002 (MPRDA) transforms rural South Africa. National and international mining capital, in alignment with local tribal authorities, are pressing for the dune mining to commence as soon as possible, citing job creation and development. The white, middle-class residents of Mtunzini village oppose the new development in principle, but in conceding that mining may have to take place are nevertheless insistent that all required regulatory authorisations are obtained, including a development authorisation in terms of the KwaZulu-Natal Planning and Development Act 6 of 2008 (KZN PDA). The municipal authority of the area, Umlalazi Municipality, appears to be split down the middle with the mayor coming out in support of the mining project, but officials of the municipality supporting the Mtunzini Conservancy in their quest to ensure that Tronox KZN Sands (Pty) Ltd obtains local planning authorisation for the project.


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