29 April 2021 [See below for Contacts.] MINING RIGHT FACES GROWING OPPOSITION The Gauteng High Court has accepted the intervention of four new applicants in the review of Tendele coal mine’s contested 212km2 mining right issued in 2016 by the Department of Mineral Resources (DMR). Pretoria, Gauteng – Judgment was…

Continue reading

Press Release: Tendele Admits to Invalid Mining Right.

Tendele Mining (Pty) Limited conceded last week to a Gauteng High Court Judge that the case brought against it by the Mfolozi Community Environmental Justice Organisation (MCEJO) is valid. By doing so, the mine admits that its 212km2 mining right application was defective and should never have been granted by…

Continue reading


Within hours of the Supreme Court of Appeal handing down judgement on Tuesday, 9 February 2021, in the matter calling for Tendele coal mine to comply with environmental legislation, the legal team acting on instructions from the Global Environmental Trust (GET) were making plans to take the case on appeal…

Continue reading

Carte-Blanche: Encroaching Risks for Mining Activists

When the Southern Africa Human Rights Defenders Network recognised 65-year-old activist Fikile Ntshangase as its defender of the year in December, the grandmother, who had been living with her 11-year-old grandson in the rural KwaZulu-Natal village of Ophondweni near Mtubatuba, was unable to collect her award. She had been assassinated at her home in October. In a country witnessing deepening rifts between environmental activists begging for sustainable, ethical mining and a growing number of unemployed, desperate for a livelihood, Carte Blanche investigates what Ntshangase’s murder signifies for the activists still embroiled in the fight against ever-encroaching coal excavation near their homes.


On Thursday, the violent assaults of 11 accused trespassers by security of Zululand Anthracite Colliery and the police will be exposed in Nongoma magistrate’s court with the objective of obtaining remedial interventions for physical and psychological injuries. Nongoma, KZN – On Thursday, 3 December 2020, the case against 11 men…

Continue reading

MEDIA RELEASE – Supreme Court of Appeal Application pushes for mining sector compliance

MEDIA RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 2 November, 2020 CONTACT: Kirsten Youens,  Mobile 061 226 6868 Janice Tooley,  Mobile 083 650 5691 Supreme Court of Appeal Application pushes for mining sector compliance On Tuesday, 3 November 2020, the Supreme Court of Appeal, will hear an appeal brought by GET &…

Continue reading


“I refused to sign. I cannot sell out my people. And if need be, I will die for my people.” Tragically, grandmother Fikile Ntshangase’s words became a reality when she was gunned down in her home at Ophondweni, near Mtubatuba, on the evening of 22 October 2020.  Mama Ntshangashe was…

Continue reading

50|50 Documentary – ZAC Mining

The 50|50 team visited Zululand Anthracite Colliery (ZAC) on the Western border of the Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park, near Ulundi, in August 2020 and filmed this documentary about the impacts of coal mining on the rivers and water in the region and the devastating consequences for communities, their livestock, wildlife and biodiversity. The extent of the dishonesty that emerges is a shocking indictment of the mining sector. The documentary is a tribute to Thanda Zulu who had the courage and tenacity to persist in drawing attention to the injustices in his community.

High stakes at Somkhele: Mine relocation row puts lives on the line

     May 15, 2020 Shootings, threats and other violence have ratcheted up tensions in Somkhele where a mine extension has exposed deep fault lines in a poor community. Fred Kockott and Matthew Hattingh report The Mthethwa home, near the Somkhele coal mine in South Africa’s KwaZulu-Natal province, was raked by gunfire recently while the family, including…

Continue reading

A Threat More Deadly than Covid-19

Keeping safe against Covid-19 is a challenge in Somkhele, where lack of water is a serious issue, but how do you protect yourself against a hail of bullets through your kitchen and bedroom windows after dark where your children are in bed asleep?  On Friday, 24 April 2020, a grandmother…

Continue reading