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Moradi Crushers instructed to communicate with Mpeke community
12 April 2024 | 10:41

The Moradi Crushers have been instructed to have a meeting with the Ha Mpeke community in the Peka area as soon as possible or face consequences from the Natural Resources parliamentary Social Cluster.

Natural Resources Social Cluster Chairperson Mr. Moeketsi Mot’soane instructed the Moradi Crushers following the meeting with the Ha Mpeke Community Association held in the New Parliament building on Thursday.

Mr. Mot’soane stated that the Natural Resources will also visit Ha Mpeke village in order to familiarise them with the prevailing situation in which the Mpeke villagers are complaining about their houses which they claim have been destroyed by the Moradi Crushers during blasting.

He also instructed the Moradi Crushers which was represented by Mr. Mokhele Likate as well as his son Mr. Bataung Likate at the meeting where the Ha Mpeke Community had petitioned the Moradi Crushers with a list of demands.

The Cluster’s chairperson also instructed Moradi Crushers to submit its documents the company submitted during its registration such as the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) and its operating lease in order to study what kind of agreement with the Ha Mpeke community are.

Mr. Mot’soane gave the Moradi Crushers until Monday next week to submit those documents after the company failed to do so as promised via email address provided. He said if the company fails to submit those documents, the Natural Resource Cluster will go to the Moradi Crushers offices to take those documents. Mr. Likate had previously told the cluster members that those documents are readily available but failed to submit them.

Speaking on behalf of the Ha Mpeke Community Association, Mr. Thabang Mokheleli said Moradi Crushers refused to address the Ha Mpeke community on issues they wanted to be addressed following a series of letters they wrote.

Mr. Mokheleli said after several attempts to have a meeting with Moradi Crushers, they went to the Transformation Resource Centre (TRC) for assistance after the Ministry of Natural Resources had also failed to assist them.

He said their demands include revisiting the agreement made by the Moradi Crushers which he said was made over 30 years ago when the company first arrived in their area, adding that during the company’s operations that include blasting, their houses, fields and underground pipes were destroyed.

Ha Mpeke Headman chief Lerema Ramoabi also cried foul that Moradi Crushers is undermining him and the villagers of Ha Mpeke to the extent that he was once arrested for being accused of having influenced the villagers to protest against the company.

Community Councillor for Manka C10 Mr. Ntsane T’siame said Moradi Crushers has only been providing the six villages affected by the operations of the Moradi Crushers with M40, 000 annually which is used for repairing water pipes as well as for purchasing a community tent.

He said access roads are poor and that the rocks from the blasting have been left in their fields and are no longer able to plant their crops.

Commissioner of Mines Mr. Mohato Moima related the procedures for applying for a mining lease but left the Natural Resources cluster members fuming after he mentioned that he knew nothing about the Ha Mpeke community grievances.

He stated that the reason for not knowing anything was due to the limited budget allocated by his office to carry out monitoring and evaluation exercises throughout the country.

Speaking on behalf of Moradi Crushers, Mr. Likate said besides the M40,000 the company spent on the six villages affected by the company's operations, they also provide crush stones as well as crusher's dust to meet the community halfway for reconstructing damaged houses.

Besides the Ha Mpeke petition, the Natural Resources cluster also has petitions from Kolo as well as Let’seng Mine among many.