Gauteng Community Safety MEC Sizakele Nkosi-Malobane on Tuessday reassured the public that student l.
This comes after the transfer of ownership of the land to the Vhembe Communal Property Association was allegedly stalled. The association has since accused the Land Commission of being influenced by unnamed politicians.
Association secretary Mahwasane Mudzweda said politicians were using the Land Commission to dispossess them of their land because of the wealth underground. Several deposits, among them nickel and diamonds, were discovered in the area.
The corridor apparently shares the diamond belt with De Beers’ Venetia mine and Tshikondeni Exxaro coal mine.
Mudzweda said there had been mining activities in the corridor decades ago – before the apartheid government cordoned-off the area since it regarded it as freedom fighters’ escape route.
He said potential investors had expressed interest in the land but were unable to proceed because influential politicians were positioning themselves to use the land for their own selfish ends.
“We rejected some individuals’ offers to use our land for mining, and now these politicians want to take our land again,” Mudzweda said yesterday. “We are still living in abject poverty despite owning a land rich with minerals.
“We want the government to give us our land so that we can decide what to do with it. No one is going to rip us off this time around.”
Though part of the land was given back to the community in 2004 it is, however, still under the control of the SA National Defence Force, who patrol the border between SA and Zimbabwe.
The area is populated by rhinos and elephants.
The community is now waiting for the title deed so that it can start negotiations with developers for mining explorations.
The Land Claims Commission had not commented at the time of going to press.