Top brass at Vaalkrantz seek solutions to community complaints

Vaalkrantz Colliery, a division of LME, situated approximately 20km east of Vryheid. Photo credit:


IN the wake of several recent protests within the communities situated in the surrounds of Vaalkrantz Colliery, approximately 20km east of Vryheid, mining moguls have met with the community leaders and laid a foundation for moving forward in a way that looks set to be mutually beneficial.

In August this year, Vaalkrantz Anthracite Colliery, a division of Leeuw Mining and Exploration Proprietary Limited, came under scrutiny by the Department of Environmental Affairs when they were found to be in violation of 32 environmental regulations, according to a previous report by the Vryheid Herald.

Since then, these violations have been rectified, according to mine boss, Vic van Rooyen and the top brass at LME have moved on, undertaking several projects to promote community upliftment in the area.

Following the protests, Van Rooyen and other relevant stakeholders met with the communities to hear their concerns and formulate an economically viable and sustainable solution by which to enrich the seven different communities in the area.

The colliery recently re-employed an additional 25 previously dismissed workers, according to Van Rooyen, as well as providing a further 15 employment opportunities to locals, in a show of good faith, to further build harmonious and prosperous relations between the mine and the inhabitants of the area.

Taking into consideration this proposed harmonious relationship and, in an effort to further cultivate a solid foundation upon which to build this mutually beneficial environment between the mine and the people, Van Rooyen met with AbaQulusi Mayor, Jerry Sibiya, on Tuesday to discuss pertinent issues pivotal to the fostering of such a consensus.

Van Rooyen described the meeting as positive and reported that another meeting will be set up by Mayor Sibiya in the near future between the community leaders and the ward councillors that will hopefully bring about favourable conditions in which to foster strong bonds between the mine and the community.

Elaine Rodway

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