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01 July 2009 - Questions: Minister of Mineral Resources

MPs to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources

Reply:

QUESTION NUMBER 2055

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 30 OCTOBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 26)

Adv H C Schmidt (DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

(1) How many (a) applications did her department receive for (i) prospecting rights, (ii) mining rights, (iii) mining permits and (iv) conversions of prospecting and mining rights in terms of the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act, Act 28 of 2002, and (b) of these applications were still outstanding as at 1 October 2009;

(2) how many (a) appeals has she and her director-general received in terms of section 96 of the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act, Act 28 of 2002, as a result of refusals between 1 May 2004 and 30 April 2009 and (b) of these appeals were still outstanding on 1 October 2009;

(3) how many applications for judicial review have been instituted against her or her department as a result of their refusal to grant (a) prospecting rights, (b) mining rights or (c) the conversion of prospecting and mining rights;

(4) (a) how many of these judicial review applications were granted, settled or refused by the High Court and (b) what was the value of the cost orders made by the court against either her or her department in respect of every judicial review? NW2709E

REPLY

(1) Since the promulgation of the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act, 2002 (Act 28 of 2002) on the 1st of May 2004, the Department has received over 20 000 applications for prospecting rights, mining rights and mining permits. In terms of the timeframes set out in the Act, applications for prospecting rights are processed within 6 months from the date of acceptance and mining rights within 12 months from the date of acceptance. There is no time frame within which the conversions of old order rights must be processed. Therefore, only those applications whose timeframe have not elapsed still stand to be finalized.

(2) The Department has since the promulgation of the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act received about approximately 780 appeals. This is in contrast to approximately 4500 prospecting rights and mining rights which have been refused.

(3) The Department has received approximately 180 applications for judicial review.

(4) Granted 21, settled 45 and refused 2.

QUESTION NO 529

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 10 JULY 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NO 6)

Adv H C Schmidt (DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

Whether any function was organised to mark the occasion of the delivery of her budget vote in 2009; if so, (a) what total amount was spent on this function, (b) from which budget was the money allocated, (c) what amount was spent on (i) food and refreshments, (ii) venue, (iii) entertainment, (iv) staff and (v) transport and (d) how many persons were invited to attend this function?

REPLY

Yes

(a) The overall amount spent for the function was R412 077.72

(b) The budget was from DME and our partners

(c) (i) R293 752.72 (paid by partners)

(ii) R25 252.27 (paid by DME)

(iii) R99 475.00 (paid by partners)

(iv) 13 DME staff

(v) R77 149.00

(d) 250 invited guests

QUESTION NUMBER 362

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 27 OCTOBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 25)

Adv H C Schmidt (DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources: [Written Question No 1335]

(1) How many applications for (a) prospecting, (b) mining and (c) other types of applications were lodged with her department in terms of the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act, Act 28 of 2002, for each type of mineral;

(2) how many applications for (a) prospecting, (b) mining and (c) other types of applications that were lodged with her department in terms of the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act, Act 28 of 2002, for each type of mineral since 1 September 2009 have not been processed;

(3) how many applications for (a) prospecting, (b) mining and (c) other types of applications that were lodged with her department before 1 September 2009 in terms of the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act, Act 28 of 2002, have not been finalised yet in each regional office? NW1684E

REPLY

1) In respect of (1) and (2) above, all applications for prospecting rights or mining rights must in terms of the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act, 2002 (Act 28 of 2002) be processed. Therefore we do not understand the question in relation to applications not being processed

2) See 1 above

3) Only those application which are within the prescribed timeframe and the conversion applications which still have to comply with the prescribed requirements have not been finalised

QUESTION NUMBER 1126

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 4 SEPTEMBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 14)

Mr P D Dexter (Cope) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

Whether the computers purchased at the value of R50 million in the past four years by the previous joint Ministry of Minerals and Energy are to be inherited by her department; if not, (a) what computers are these, (b) how will it be apportioned and utilised and (c) what would happen to the R75 million that has been approved for further purchases of computers; if so, what will her department do with such an enormous computer capacity? NW1391E

REPLY

In actual fact, the Department of Minerals and Energy spending on computer equipment in the past four years was R 16,658,316.20 which comprises

 R4, 843,902.99 for 2008/09;

 R3, 527,433.27 for 2007/08;

 R4, 023,517.27 for 2006/07 and

 R4, 263,462.67 for 2005/06.

These amounts are also available in the audited Annual Financial Statements which are contained in the annual reports for the respective periods..

(a) The above amounts include the following major items

· Desktops and Laptops for use by departmental officials

· Servers and related infrastructure

· Printers and other computer equipment

(b) The Desktops and Laptops are allocated to positions which will continue to exist in the new Department of Mineral Resources and Department of Energy. This will therefore be apportioned and utilised in line with the new structures of the two departments. The existing servers will be allocated to either Mineral Resource or Energy based on the technical specifications and the requirements of each department

(c) There is no approval granted to spend R75 million on computers

QUESTION NUMBER 2057

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 30 OCTOBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 26)

Adv H C Schmidt (DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

(1) How many (a)(i) ownerless and (ii) abandoned mines have been found to exist as at 1 October 2009;

(2) whether her department has a plan to deal with these mines; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so,

(3) whether her department has made this plan available for public comment; if not,

(4) whether this plan will be made public in the future; if not, why not; if so, when? NW2711E

REPLY

(1) (i) approximately 70 sites

(ii) Not applicable

(2) The Department is in the process of developing an inclusive strategy in addressing derelict and ownerless mine sites

(3) Refer to 2 above

(4) Not applicable for now.

QUESTION NUMBER 2056

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 30 OCTOBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 26)

Adv H C Schmidt (DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

Whether the water ingress and regional mine closure strategy for the Witwatersrand and Klerksdorp-Orkney-Stilfontein-Hartebeestfontein (KOSH) area has been made available for public comment; if not, (a) when will such documents be made available and (b) why has there been a delay in publicising the relevant documents? NW2710E

REPLY

Yes. The draft Regional Mine Closure Strategy (RMCS) documents for both Klerksdorp-Orkney-Stilfontein Hartebeesfontein (KOSH) and Witwatersrand Basins (namely Western, Far Western Eastern and Central basin) were made available for public comments. The Council for Geosciences (CGS), which had been contracted by the Department of Mineral Resources to develop the RMCS, posted the Regional Mine Closure Strategy documents on its website for public comment from the 15th December 2008 to the 31stof January 2009. In addition, an invitation to all interested and affected parties was circulated on the 15th of December 2008, urging them to view and comment on the documents. The period for commenting on the documents was extended to the 28th of February 2009.

a) Falls off

b) Falls off

QUESTION NUMBER 2012

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 30 OCTOBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 26)

Mr E J Marais (DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

(1) What total amount in respect of advertising has her department and all specified entities reporting to it (a) budgeted for and (b) spent (i) in the 2008-09 financial year and (ii) during the period 1 April 2009 up to the latest specified date for which information is available;

(2) (a) what total number of advertisements for her department and each entity reporting to it (i) appeared in the print media and (ii) were broadcast on (aa) radio and (bb) television, (b) how much did each advertisement cost and (c) what was the purpose of each advertisement?

REPLY:

(1) (a) N/A

(b) (i) N/A.

(ii) For the period May until October 2009 an amount of R 535 542,18 on the advertisement posts

2(a) (i) 24 posts were advertised, in the department alone (not including public entities)

(ii) (aa) N/A

(bb) N/A

(b) Each advertisement cost between R20 000 and R25 000 per advertisement

(c) Mainly Recruitment

QUESTION NUMBER 1723

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 16 OCTOBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 22)

Adv H C Schmidt (DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

(1) What amount was spent by her department on (a) hotel accommodation, (b) restaurant expenses and (c) travel costs (i) in the 2008-09 financial year and (ii) during the period 1 April 2009 up to the latest specified date for which information is available, for (aa) her, (bb) specified officials of her department and (cc) any other specified individuals;

(2) why did each individual use the specified accommodation in each case? NW2215E

REPLY

1. (a) Hotel accommodation

(i) Not applicable, the Department of Mineral Resources only came into existence during the 2009/10 financial year

(ii) for 2009/10

(aa) R 42 278.45

(bb) R0

(cc) R0

(b) Restaurant expenses

(i) N/A see (a) (i)

(ii) 2009/10

(aa) R 20 720.26

(bb) R0

(cc) R0

(c) Travel Costs

(i) N/A see (a) (i)

(ii) for 2009/10

(aa) R213 327.51

(bb) R0

(cc) R 47 835.70

  1. Each individual used the specified accommodation in each case for business purpose where they were required as part of their normal duties to be away from their normal place of work.

QUESTION NUMBER 2127

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 6 NOVEMBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 27)

Mr E J Marais(DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

(1) Whether mining licences are approved before inputs from other spheres of government have been received; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what are the relevant details;

(2) whether any mining licences have been issued before zoning and environmental impact assessments (EIA) have been completed; if so, (a) how many licences, (b) in how many cases did the applicants withdraw the zoning and the EIA applications after the licences were issued and (c) what steps is her department taking to ensure that zoning and EIA are done?

REPLY

(1) There is no provision in the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act, 2002 (Act 28 of 2002) provides for the issuing of mining licenses. However, sections 17, 23 and 27 of the MPRDA empower the Minister to grant prospecting rights, mining rights and mining permits. Section 40(1) of the Act states that "When considering an environmental management plan or environmental management programme in terms of section 39, the Minister must consult with any State department which administers any law relating to matters affecting the environment."

(2) There is no provision in the MPRDA that calls upon the Minister to grant prospecting or mining rights subject to zoning requirements of a local government. As far as EIAs are concerned they are conducted during the EMP process.

QUESTION NO 504

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 10 JULY 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NO 6)

Mr M J Ellis (DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

(1) With reference to her reply to question no 71 on 2 July 2009, what is a negative environmental impact;

(2) whether acid mine drainage is regarded as having a negative environmental impact, considering the effect it has on the environment; if not, how was this conclusion reached; if so, why can funds held by her department for the rehabilitation of mines not be used for dealing with acid mine drainage? NW567E

REPLY

(1) Negative environmental impact, implies an activity or action or event that adversely impacts and influences the environment.

(2) If not managed properly, acid mine drainage can have negative impact on the environment.

QUESTION NUMBER 2256

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 13 NOVEMBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 28)

Adv H C Schmidt (DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

(1) Whether the Peak Quarry in Eersterivier have an Environmental Management Programme Report (EPMR); if not, why not; if so, (a) when was it approved, (b) when did the quarry first commence operations, (c) in what year is expected to stop operations, (d) how many times has inspectors from her department visited the mine since January 2008 and (e) what was the date of each visit;

(2) Whether any directives have been issued against the mine for non-compliance on any matters relating to the EMPR since it commenced operations; if so, what are relevant details?

(3) What are provisions in EMPR that relate to how the quarry operators need to manage (a) noise and (b) dust?

REPLY

1 (a) Yes, the mine has an approved Environmental Management Programme Report (EMPR), approved on 12 June 2000 in terms of the repealed Minerals Act, 1991 (Act 50 of 1991).

(b) A mining authorization was issued on 22 July 1994 in terms of the repealed Minerals Act, 1991, but the mine was in operation long before that time, in terms of legislation prior to the Minerals Act, 1991.

(c) The operation in the Quarry will stop once the reserves have been depleted.

(d) Inspections are conducted in accordance with an inspection plan. As such a total of 6 mine health inspection have been conducted.

(e) Inspections were conducted as per the inspection plans.

(2) No.

(3) The information relating to noise and dust levels is contained in the approved Environmental Management Programme Report, as amended. The noise provision addresses noise within and outside the perimeter of the mine.

QUESTION NUMBER 270

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 27 OCTOBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 25)

Ms F C Bikani (ANC) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources

(a) What progress has been made in establishing a state-owned mining company and (b) what would be its primary purpose? NO2595E

REPLY

The State Owned Mining Company was established prior to the democratic dispensation, with the aim of ensuring security of supply of strategic energy commodities for local consumption. At the time of its establishment, the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act was not in existence, which means the company was operating under a different regulatory regime, which did not embrace the transformation agenda. The resuscitation of this company under the current regulatory environment is intended to continue ensuring security of strategic commodities, particularly energy commodities, while effecting the developmental agenda of Government.

The primary purpose of the company is to acquire and hold rights in respect of energy related and other strategic minerals on behalf of the State and develop these mineral commodities for national interest.

QUESTION NUMBER 261

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 27 OCTOBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 25)

Adv A de W Alberts (FF Plus) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

Whether she intends proposing an amendment to the policy regarding the private ownership of mines; if so, (a) why and (b) what are the Government's proposals in this regard? NO2583E

REPLY

No

a) Falls off

b) Falls off

QUESTION NUMBER 269

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 27 OCTOBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 25)

Mr V V Magagula (ANC) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources

What programmes of assistance and/or strategic plans are in place to encourage and develop small-scale miners in the country? NO2594E

REPLY

The department has identified small scale mining as a prospect of critical intervention to uplift rural communities. As a result the department is developing a small scale mining strategy, which will be implemented in the next financial year

QUESTION NUMBER 1248


DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 11 SEPTEMBER 2009


(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 16)


ADV H C Schmidt (DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

(1) What (a) are the reasons for the Cabinet's decision to suspend the disposal of State-owned mining assets, (b) is the purpose of the suspension and (c) entities and/or departments are responsible for the audit of the mining assets; 
(2) whether an investigation into the regulatory environment within the mining sector pertaining to the suspension of the disposal of mining assets has been mandated; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what are the relevant details;
(3) what will be the duration of the suspension? NW1590E

REPLY


(1) (a) and (b) The Cabinet approved suspension of disposal of mining assets to allow the Minister of Mineral Resources adequate time to finalise an audit of mining interests held directly or indirectly by the State. 
(c) DMR is Responsible

(2) Yes, through Cabinet's decision

(3) Cannot indicate the duration but intend to report to cabinet soon after finalisation of the audit

QUESTION NUMBER 1980

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 30 OCTOBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 26)

Mr M Waters (DA to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

(1) Whether, with reference to a reply to Question 588 on 26 May 2008, any inspectors have visited the Witfontein R/33/151R mining site; if not, (a) why not and (b) when will this be done; if so, (i) when, (ii) who were the inspectors and (iii) what were their findings;

(2) whether any inspection has been conducted to determine whether regulation 17(6) of the Mine Health and Safety Act, Act 29 of 1996, is being adhered to; if not, (a) why not and (b) when will this be done; if so, when;

(3) whether there are any laws or regulations that stipulate the number of inspections that should be carried out by her department at mining sites per year; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what are the relevant details;

(4) whether such obligations have been met with regard to the abovementioned mining site; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details? NW2463E

REPLY

(1) Yes, Inspections were conducted on 20th and 31st October 2008 by Senior Inspector FJ Nkuna of the Gauteng Region Office as well as on 18th November 2008 by Senior Inspector F Barradas and Inspector J Kearney of the Directorate: Mine Surveying, Head Office, Pretoria.

During these inspections it was found that regulation 17(6) was not applicable as the mine was established in 1983 whilst the township, according to the deeds office, was only proclaimed in 2003. There was also no evidence found that the developer of the township of Glen Erasmia Extensions 4 & 5, which has been established within a horizontal distance of 100 metres from the boundary of the quarry, had submitted an application for comment to my Department, nor had the developer complied with Regulations 17(7)(b) or 17(8)(b) of the Mine Health and Safety Act, Act 29 of 1996, which stipulate that no structures may be erected within a horizontal distance of 100 metres from a mine without prior submission of a risk assessment to, and approval from, the Chief Inspector of Mines.

(2) Yes, the aforementioned inspections were carried out, inter-alia, to investigate compliance of regulation 17(6) as well as compliance with regulations 17(7)(b) and 17(8)(b).

(3) No, there are no laws or regulations that stipulate the number of inspections to be carried out per year. The Annual Business Plan of the Mine Safety Inspectorate, however, determines the risk value of underground and surface mining operations, which in turn, determines the frequency of visits to individual mining sites.

(4) Yes, the obligations were met on 31st October and 14th November 2008 which were routine inspections. All relevant details regarding the legal standing between the mine and the adjacent township have been addressed in my reply of question 1 above.

QUESTION NUMBER 1856

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 23 OCTOBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 24)

Adv H C Schmidt (DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

(1) Whether (a) she, (b) any specified officials and (c) any other persons have been issued with a government or official credit card; if so, what are the relevant details for her and each holder of a credit card in respect of the (i) name, (ii) job title, (iii) credit limit, (iv) outstanding amount as at the latest specified date for which information is available, (v) monthly expenses incurred for each month since receiving the credit card, (vi) reason for such persons being issued with a credit card and (vii) uses that such a credit card is intended for;

(2) whether any such credit cards are over their credit limit; if so, (a) whose credit cards are over the limit and (b) what is the reason for the credit cards exceeding the limit;

(3) whether any action has been taken against such persons for exceeding their credit card limits; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details? NW2416E

REPLY

(1) (a) No. The Minister has not been issued with a government or official credit card by 30 September 2009.

(b) Yes. Other specified official has been issued with an official credit card.

(c) No. No other persons have been issued with a government or official credit card.

(a) (i) Not applicable

(b) (i) Advocate Sandile Nogxina

(ii) Director General

(iii) The limit is R10 000.00

(iv) R663.00 was outstanding as at 30 September 2009

(v) June 2008 – R143.39; July/August 2008 – R433.39; September 2008 – R1 169.70; October 2008 – R1 727.30; November 2008 – R5 546.42; December 2008 – R304.29; January/February 2009 – R2 065.50; March 2009 – R2 508.79; April 2009 – Nil; May 2009 – R663.00; June 2009 – Nil; July 2009 – Nil; August 2009 – R1 159.70; September 2009 – R663.00.

(vi) To ensure that the Director General is not financially prejudiced when executing official duties outside the normal work station.

(vii) To enable direct payment of other departmental activities such as refreshments/entertainment and other incidental expenses that takes place outside the normal work station.

(c) Not applicable

(2) No. The card is not over the credit limit.

(a) Not applicable.

(b) Not applicable.

(3) Not applicable.

QUESTION NUMBER 1855

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 23 OCTOBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 24)

Adv H C Schmidt (DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

(1) In respect of each version of the 2008-09 annual report of her department and the annual reports of each statutory and other entity reporting to her department, (a) what was the (i) budgeted cost, (ii) actual cost and (iii) breakdown of cost in respect of (aa) printing, (bb) graphic design, (cc) other costs and (dd) unit cost of each annual report and (b) how many copies of each were (i) produced and (ii) distributed;

(2) whether any version of the abovementioned reports was retracted or withdrawn; if so, (a) how many times were each annual report withdrawn or retracted, (b) what (i) were the reasons for each withdrawal or retraction and (ii) was the amount spent on each version and (c) how many copies were withdrawn in each case;

(3) how was the decision taken to award the contract to the (a) graphic design company and (b) printing company;

(4) whether (a) her department or (b) any of those public entities that fall under her department held a function on tabling their 2008-09 annual report; if so, in each case (i) what was the name of the public entity, (ii) how much did the function cost, (iii) what is the breakdown of that cost, (iv) where was the function held and (v) how many guests were invited? NW2415E

REPLY

(1)

(a) (i) R200,000.00

(ii) R 281,380.50

(iii) (aa) R 137,297.00

(bb) R 82,600.00

(cc) R 26 928.00

(dd) R137.30

(2) No

(a) N/A

(b) (i) (ii) N/A

(c) N/A

(3) In terms of the PPPFA.

(4) (a) No

(b) No

(i) N/A

(ii) N/A

(iii) N/A

(iv) N/A

(v) N/A

QUESTION NUMBER 1854

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 23 OCTOBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 24)

Adv H C Schmidt (DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

Whether any mining company or entity that operated and mined resources which were granted mining rights before the commencement of the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act, Act 28 of 2002, who have failed to submit their applications for mining rights on 2 May 2009 and on 15 October 2009, are still continuing to operate and mine resources; if so, what are their names? NW2414E

REPLY

It is not clear what honourable member Adv H C Schmidt is referring to by "mined resources". No mining company was granted mining rights prior to 01 May 2004.

QUESTION NUMBER 1159

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 11 SEPTEMBER 2009

Mr E J Marais (DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

Whether her department uses temporary employment services and/or labour brokers; if so, (a) why, (b) how many positions have been filled by temporary employment services in the (i) 2006-07, (ii) 2007-08 and (iii) 2008-09 financial years, (c) what percentage of the total staff complement did temporary employment services contribute in each of these years and (d) how much money has been spent on temporary employment services in each year?

REPLY

No

QUESTION NO 471

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 03 JULY 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NO 6)

Adv H C Schmidt (DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

(1) With reference to her reply to question no 112 on 2 July 2009, what were the reported causes of (a) deaths of legal mine workers and (b) accidents causing injuries to legal mine workers during the period 1 June 2008 to 1 June 2009;

(2) whether her department (a) has taken any steps in addition to implementing the Mine Health and Safety Act, Act 29 of 1996 and (b) will introduce any additional measures to stop or reduce the (i) illegal mining activities and (ii) fatal mining incidents whilst on duty; if not, why not; if so, what steps? NW532E

REPLY

1(a) and (b) The reported causes of both injuries and deaths of legal miners are ranked as follows:

1. Falls of ground (caused by gravity 60% and 40% seismicity).

2. Trackless Mobile Machinery (Truck accidents).

3. Railbound Transport (Underground train derailments).

4. Falling from Heights.

5. Electricity.

6. Explosives.

2(a) The Department conducted countrywide Presidential Mine health Safety Audits to ensure compliance with the provisions of the Mine Health and Safety Act and to eliminate or reduce mine employee fatal accidents. A report depicting the overall performance by the mining industry was compiled which included recommendations for enhancing mine health and safety.

A Mine Health and Safety Tripartite Summit, lead by the former Minister of the Department of Minerals and Energy, was also held to consider sustainable measures that would enhance health and safety at the mines. All the respective principals of the State, Labour and Employer stakeholders together agreed on the action steps which would be adopted for eliminating or reducing cases of ill health, fatalities and injuries in the industry.

In addition, meetings are held with the CEOs of the respective mining companies to ensure that effective health and safety management systems are implemented to prevent harm. Critical measures, including mine stoppages, are also taken where necessary to ensure compliance with the provisions of the Act.

2(b)(i) Illegal mining is not regulated

(b)(ii) The Mine Health and Safety Act was amended to strengthen the enforcement provisions and the Department's capacity for ensuring effective coverage of the mines.

QUESTION NUMBER 2193

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 6 NOVEMBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 27)

Mrs P de Lille (ID) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

Whether commercial companies that mine sand must comply with the conditions of the Land Use Planning Ordinance Amendment Act, Act 64 of 1992; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details? NW2901E

REPLY

The Minerals and Petroleum Resources Development Act, 2002 (Act 28 of 2002) is the statutory instrument passed by Parliament (the National Assembly and the National Council of Provinces) to regulate the minerals and mining sector in South Africa. There is no provision in the Minerals and Petroleum Resources Development Act, 2002 which stipulates that decision taken in terms of this Act are subject to provisions of a local government.

QUESTION NUMBER 2186

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 6 NOVEMBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 27)

Adv H C Schmidt (DA)to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

Whether, any state-owned mining company/entity has been awarded prospecting and/or mining rights or permits in the 2008-09 financial year; if so, (a) for which minerals in each case and (b) what is the name of the mining company/entity in each case? NW2894E

REPLY

All applicants for prospecting rights, mining rights or mining permits are treated equally in terms of the provisions of the Minerals and Petroleum Resources Development Act, 2002 and other legislation. Therefore, it is not proper nor correct for private information of any applicant to be divulged to the public.

The existing direct and indirect t state-owned prospecting and mining companies are Alexkor (Ptd) Ltd, Foskor (Pty) Ltd and African Exploration Mining and Finance Corporation (Pty) Ltd.

QUESTION NUMBER 2185

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 6 NOVEMBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 27)

Adv H C Schmidt (DA)to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

Whether any mineral has been declared a strategic mineral in terms of the applicable legislation in the 2008-09 financial year; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, (a) what minerals, (b) on what date in each case and (c) for what reason in each case? NW2893E

REPLY

No

(a) Falls off

(b) Falls off

(c) Falls off

Background Information

The interpretation of the question is that it flows from the previous oral response in respect of State Owned Mining Company, in which the department indicated that the company will focus on strategic minerals. There are currently no provisions in legislation for declaration of any mineral as strategic, other than the inference on uranium as a strategic mineral in the Nuclear Policy of June 2008 as well as Minister Sonjica's and Alec Erwin statements in parliament at the time.

In light of challenges of energy deficit, priority of classification of minerals as strategic is currently on energy commodities, viz. coal, uranium, fluorspar, thorium, zirconium and platinum. To this extent, the department has drafted strategies on both uranium and coal and is prioritising finalisation of these strategies, which will be translated into the minerals being declared strategic.

It is the intention of the department to declare all minerals of the people of the Republic of South Africa strategic to support government programmes such as Beneficiation, Infrastructure Development and National Industrial Policy Framework.

QUESTION NUMBER 2193

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 6 NOVEMBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 27)

Mrs P de Lille (ID) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

Whether commercial companies that mine sand must comply with the conditions of the Land Use Planning Ordinance Amendment Act, Act 64 of 1992; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details? NW2901E

REPLY

The Minerals and Petroleum Resources Development Act, 2002 (Act 28 of 2002) is the statutory instrument passed by Parliament (the National Assembly and the National Council of Provinces) to regulate the minerals and mining sector in South Africa. There is no provision in the Minerals and Petroleum Resources Development Act, 2002 which stipulates that decision taken in terms of this Act are subject to provisions of a local government.

QUESTION NUMBER 2186

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 6 NOVEMBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 27)

Adv H C Schmidt (DA)to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

Whether, any state-owned mining company/entity has been awarded prospecting and/or mining rights or permits in the 2008-09 financial year; if so, (a) for which minerals in each case and (b) what is the name of the mining company/entity in each case? NW2894E

REPLY

All applicants for prospecting rights, mining rights or mining permits are treated equally in terms of the provisions of the Minerals and Petroleum Resources Development Act, 2002 and other legislation. Therefore, it is not proper nor correct for private information of any applicant to be divulged to the public.

The existing direct and indirect t state-owned prospecting and mining companies are Alexkor (Ptd) Ltd, Foskor (Pty) Ltd and African Exploration Mining and Finance Corporation (Pty) Ltd.

QUESTION NUMBER 2185

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 6 NOVEMBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 27)

Adv H C Schmidt (DA)to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

Whether any mineral has been declared a strategic mineral in terms of the applicable legislation in the 2008-09 financial year; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, (a) what minerals, (b) on what date in each case and (c) for what reason in each case? NW2893E

REPLY

No

(a) Falls off

(b) Falls off

(c) Falls off

Background Information

The interpretation of the question is that it flows from the previous oral response in respect of State Owned Mining Company, in which the department indicated that the company will focus on strategic minerals. There are currently no provisions in legislation for declaration of any mineral as strategic, other than the inference on uranium as a strategic mineral in the Nuclear Policy of June 2008 as well as Minister Sonjica's and Alec Erwin statements in parliament at the time.

In light of challenges of energy deficit, priority of classification of minerals as strategic is currently on energy commodities, viz. coal, uranium, fluorspar, thorium, zirconium and platinum. To this extent, the department has drafted strategies on both uranium and coal and is prioritising finalisation of these strategies, which will be translated into the minerals being declared strategic.

It is the intention of the department to declare all minerals of the people of the Republic of South Africa strategic to support government programmes such as Beneficiation, Infrastructure Development and National Industrial Policy Framework.

QUESTION NUMBER 97

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 8 SEPTEMBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 15)

Adv H C Schmidt (DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

(1) What steps have been taken to develop institutional mechanisms and structures in order to give support to historically disadvantaged persons in respect of transforming the mining industry;

(2) whether her department and/or any other department or institution will be responsible for the implementation of these steps; if so, (a) when and (b) what are the further relevant details? NO1428E

REPLY

1 My department developed the first mechanism of implementing the transformation agenda with the precursor charter, the mining charter, which Charter sets out specific targets for transformation of the industry, with particular emphasis on extending the benefits to the historically disadvantaged South Africans, including, albeit not limited to community benefits, ownership and management participation. The vesting of custodianship of mineral rights to State has enabled my department to attach conditions to the issuing of mining rights, which seek to effectively drive the transformation agenda. This meant that as companies apply for mining rights (including conversions of old order rights), their commitment in relation to the transformation pillars of the Charter are scrutinised and for the basis of the conditions of their license.

2 My Department is implementing this legislation

a. Already in progress, having started from the 2004 May 1st.

b. Not applicable

QUESTION NUMBER 2349

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 20 NOVEMBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 29)

Mr E J Marais(DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

Whether, with reference to her reply to written Question 415 on 17 July 2009, she has purchased a new vehicle; if not, (a) when will she purchase a new vehicle and (b) what is the value of the vehicle she is currently using; if so, (i) why, (ii) what make and model is the vehicle, (iii) what did the vehicle cost and (iv) what (aa) accessories were included in excess of the vehicle's purchase price and (bb) was the cost of such accessories? NW3062E

REPLY

I have not purchased a new vehicle.

(a) I have not made a decision to buy a new vehicle yet..

(b) I am currently using a leased vehicle and therefore value cannot be put on such vehicle.

(i) Falls away

(ii) Falls away

(iii) Falls away

(iv) Falls away

(aa) Falls away

(bb) Falls away

QUESTION NO 415

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 03 JULY 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NO 5)

Adv H C Schmidt (DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

(1) Whether she purchased a new vehicle on her appointment to office; if so, (a) why, (b) what make and model is the vehicle, (c) what did the vehicle cost and (d)(i) what accessories were included in excess of the vehicle's purchase price and (ii) what was the cost of such accessories; if not,

(2) whether she inherited an existing vehicle; if so, (a) what was the make and model and (b) how old is the vehicle? NW476E

REPLY

(1) No, I have not yet purchased a vehicle since my appointment. I am currently making use of loan vehicles from BMW in terms of the arrangement between BMW and the Department of Transport.

(2) Falls away. Refer to the explanation above.

QUESTION NUMBER 1797

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 16 OCTOBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 22)

Mr G R Morgan (DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

(1) (a) How many of her department's officials are dedicated to environmental protection and monitoring,(b) what are their respective designations, (c) how many vacancies currently exist for such officials and (d) for low long has each of these positions been vacant;

(2) what was the budget for environmental protection and monitoring for the 2008-09 financial year;

(3) (a) how many mines were found to be in transgression of their environmental management programmes in the 2008-09 financial year, (b) what was the nature of the transgression in each case and (c) what action did her department take in each case?

REPLY

(1) Seventy eight (78) of the Department's officials are dedicated to environmental protection and monitoring,

Thirteen (13) vacancies (of which 12 became vacant since June 2009) currently exist for such officials.

(2) What was the budget for environmental protection and monitoring for the 2008-09 financial year?

Each regional office of the Department of Mineral Resources has a global integrated budget from which funds are sourced by interalia the officials referred to in question 1 above.

(3) (a) Two hundred and fifteen (215) cases of transgression of environmental management requirements were found in the 2008-09 financial year,

(b) Transgressions cover a wide spectrum varying from minor issues to more significant issues.

(c) Actions undertaken by the department are as follows:

Action was taken by the Department in accordance with the provisions of the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act, 2002(Act 28 0f 2002).

QUESTION NUMBER 1063

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 4 SEPTEMBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 14)

Adv H C Schmidt (DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

(1) Whether approval has been granted to any mining company or other applicant during the period 1 July 2008 to the present for the construction of new mine tailings storage facilities; if so, (a) where will it be located, (b) the date on which date was approval granted, (c) for which time period is such storage facility to be constructed, (d) when will it become operational and (e) what is the extent of the land surface it is to occupy;

(2) whether agricultural land will be the site on which the storage facilities will be built; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what is the name of the successful applicant and/or mining company?

REPLY

(1) No approval has been granted to any mining company for the construction of new mine tailing storage facilities by the Department of Mineral Resources and no application for the said facility was submitted to the Department of Mineral Resources.

(a) NA

(b) NA

(c) NA

(d) NA

(e) NA

2. NA

QUESTION NUMBER 1062

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 4 SEPTEMBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 14)

Adv H C Schmidt (DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

(1) Whether approval has been granted to a certain mining company (name furnished) for the construction of a storage facility (details furnished); if so, (a) where will it be located, (b) the date on which approval was granted, (c) the time period during which such storage facility is to be constructed, (d) when will it become operational and (e) the extent of the land surface it is to occupy;

(2) whether agricultural land will be the site on which the storage facility will be built; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what are the relevant details? NW1323E

REPLY

Please refer to the response to question 1063.

QUESTION NUMBER 1189

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 11 SEPTEMBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 16)

Adv H C Schmidt (DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

In light of the appointment of a certain company (name furnished) to conduct an assessment of compliance in respect of the Mining Charter, (a) what is its mandate, (b) what is the date on which it must present its report to the department, (c) who are the (i) directors and (ii) members of this company and (d) what is the cost of commissioning the report?

REPLY

(a) The mandate of the company is to undertake an independent assessment of the cumulative progress (by the mining industry) against the targets of the Mining Charter, as agreed upon by all stakeholders prior to implementation of this Charter.

(b) End of September, 2009.

(c) (i) Ms. Kate Moloto and Mr. Titus Mpe.

(ii) Not applicable

(d) The report is commissioned at a total cost of R 3,659,172.00.

QUESTION NUMBER 1608

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 9 OCTOBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 20)

Adv H C Schmidt (DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

(1) (1)Whether her department developed and adopted a policy providing guidelines for the appointment of persons with a criminal record; if so, (a) when was the policy (i) developed and (ii) adopted and (b) where can a copy of the policy be obtained; if not,

(2) Whether her department has any plans in place to develop and adopt such a policy; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details;

(3) Whether her department does any pre-employment screening of potential employees for criminal records; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details;

(4) Whether any employees with criminal records are currently employed by her department; if so, (a) how many and (b) what is their (i) job level and (ii) occupational category? NW2014E

REPLY

(1) Yes,

(a) (i) in 2002 under DME

(ii) in 2004

(b) The Policy and the DME Vetting Strategy is available on request.

(2) Not applicable

(3) Yes, all potential employees are sent for pre-employment screening before the approval is granted for the appointment. The pre-employment screening of the Department covers the following: Criminal record checks, citizenship status, credit worthiness, previous employment and qualification verification.

(4) No

(a) Not applicable

(b) (i) Not applicable

(ii) Not applicable

QUESTION NUMBER 1678

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 16 OCTOBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 22)

Adv H C Schmidt (DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

Whether, since her appointment in May 2009 any renovations or alterations were done at state owned and private residences of her or any other specified official of her department; if so, (a) where she and the occupants of each such residence were accommodated during the renovations and (b) at what cost to his department in each case? NW2134E

REPLY

No.

(a) Falls away

(b) Falls away

QUESTION NO 552

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 10 JULY 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NO 6)

Adv H C Schmidt (DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

(1) Whether her department makes use of private security firms; if so, how much money was spent on such firms in 2008;

(2) whether these firms are used on a contractual basis; if so, (a) how many contracts did her department take out in this regard in 2008, (b) with which firms were these contracts taken out, (c) for what specific purpose was each contract taken out and (d) what was the value of the contract in each case;

(3) why is there a need for her department to use a private security firm as opposed to state security?

REPLY

(1) Yes, the Department makes use private security firms. The money spent the security firms in 2008 is R186 435.60.

(2) Yes the firms are used on contractual basis.

(a) Two firms were contracted in 2008

(b) Siyashesha Security Services and Enforce Armed Response System

(c) Siyashesha Security Services for Physical security at Olifantsfontein training centre and Enforce Security Services for Armed Response System at Durban regional office

(d) The department paid R186 435.60 per annum for Siyashesha Security Services and paid R4 035 to Enforce Security Services

(3) It is government policy.

QUESTION NO 569

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 10 JULY 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NO 6)

Mr AM Figlan (DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

(1) (a) How many sand mining operations have been authorised by her department (i) in or (ii) adjacent to the Umgeni River system and (b) what is the name of the entity that has been awarded approval to mine in each case;

(2) whether the sand mining operation run by an entity called Crossmore near the Anthurium Place access road in eThekwini has been authorised by her department; if not, what action will be taken against this operation; if so, when was the application granted;

(3) whether steps are being taken to ensure that the operation complies with the Environmental Management Plan; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details;

(4) whether any directives have been issued against the operation; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details? NW633E

REPLY

1. The following mining permits have been issued on the Umgeni river:

(a) (i) 12

(b) (ii) 4

1. X Moor Transport cc 379MP

2. X Moor Transport cc 74MP

3. BHD Zuma 218MP

4. M A Hall 246MP

5. C N Shabalala 216MP

6. Ziyasha Logistics (Pty) Ltd 204MP

7. A B Sibisi 260MP

8. Very Nice Trading (Pty) Ltd 168MP

9. P T Dube 254MP

10. Little Rock Trading 45cc 147MP

11. Quebeka Euzils Building Material Suppliers cc 355MP

12. Uzuzinikela Trading 9 cc 233MP

13. Versatex 486 (Pty) Ltd 58MP

14. Invincible Panther Co-operative Limited 141MP

15. Tack it Trading cc 370MP

16. Gamelihle Sand and Pebble Suppliers cc 169MP

(ii) The following rights/permits have been issued adjacent to the Umgeni River

system:

1. K Lutchman (Tributary adjacent to Umgeni River) 232MR

2. V Govender 45MP

3. Kovacs Investments (Pty) Ltd (Qala Quarry – adjacent to Umgeni River System) -

102MR

4. Invincible Panther Co-operative Limited (Granite Quarry adjacent to Umgeni river) -

146MR

2. From the Department's records there is no company by the name of Crossmore which is a holder of any permit or rights

3. Question not applicable, see Question 2 reply.

4. Question not applicable, see Question 2 reply.

31 December 2008 - Questions: Minister of Mineral and Energy

MPs to ask the Minister of Minerals and Energy

Reply:

Question no. 376

QUESTION PAPER DATE: FRIDAY, 07 March 2008

376: Adv H C Schmidt (DA) to ask the Minister of Minerals and Energy:

(1) Between 1 May 2004 and 29 February 2008 the Department received 8196 prospecting rights (ii) mining rights-1359,(iii) mining permits-4244, (iv) (aa) the period for conversion of prospecting rights expired in April 2006, a total of 378 conversions were received.(bb) mining rights conversions -549

(1) (b) (i) and (ii) A total of 504 appeals were received during the aforementioned period. What is however important to note at this stage, is that the majority of so-called appeals received by the Department, has been processed in terms of section103(4)(b) of the MPRDA, as it relates to Ministerial decisions taken under delegated authority, which as a result rendered an appeal in terms of section 96 of the Act, incompetent.

(c) (i) Of the appeals received, 23 were successful and (ii) 48 unsuccessful

The remainder of the appeals were either withdrawn (38), suspended pending litigation (32) or negotiations (48) or still pending (315).

2. (i) The department has not identified quality of decisions as a cause for settlement with parties, settlement is as per agreement between the Applicants and the Department, thus meaning that the matters were in effect settled between the parties.

(ii) As referred in 2(i) majority of matters not opposed is because of the agreements between the parties.

Question no. 1219

QUESTION PAPER DATE: FRIDAY, 01 August 2008

1219: Adv H C Schmidt (DA) to ask the Minister of Minerals and Energy:

With reference to her reply to Question 653 on 17 July 2008, how many applications for (a) prospecting rights, (b) mining (i) rights and (ii) permits and (c) conversions of (i) prospecting and (ii) mining rights did her department return to the applicants after acceptance of the application for purposes of further details and/or information and/or completion submitted in terms of the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act, Act 28 of 2002?

REPLY

The Department does not return applications to applicants after acceptance, applications are only returned to applicants if they were rejected. After acceptance the department as stipulated in the Act, have to inform the applicant of such acceptance and request the applicant to consult with interested and affected parties and submit the results of such consultation and to submit an Environmental Management Plan/Programme within the specified time frames. Therefore the Department request information on all the accepted applications.

Question no. 1220

QUESTION PAPER DATE: FRIDAY, 01 August 2008

1220Adv H C Schmidt (DA) to ask the Minister of Minerals and Energy:

With reference to her reply to Question 653 on 17 July 2008, and the fact that no mining right conversions were refused, on what grounds were the judicial reviews instituted against her department based on applications for mining rights submitted in terms of the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act, Act 28 of 2002?

REPLY

The grounds on which the judicial reviews were instituted in respect of conversion applications referred to in the reply to question 653 did not concern the merits of the applications per se. In two of the judicial review proceedings, the parties held different views on the interpretation of the time period for the lodgement of conversion of prospecting right application as per the transitional provisions of the MPRDA. The Court ruled in favour of the interpretation of the applicant. The third review which is still pending, essentially relates to a dispute between two parties, which arose subsequent to the granting of a conversion application to the Respondent in this matter. The Department has no material interest in the outcome of the review proceedings.

Question no.551

QUESTION PAPER DATE: FRIDAY, 28March 2008

551: Mr. W D Spies (FF Plus) to ask the Minister of Minerals and Energy:

Whether an increase in electricity tariffs will also come into force on 1 April 2008 for neighboring countries to which South Africa supplies electricity; if not, why not; if so, what is the (a) current tariff and (b) percentage increase for (i) Namibia, (ii) Botswana, (iii) Mozambique, (iv) Lesotho, (v) Swaziland

RESPONSE:

The electricity tariffs to neighbouring utilities escalate at the agreed rates in their supply agreements. In most cases this escalation is equal to or higher than the NERSA approved escalation and comes into effect from 1 April each year. In some instances however agreements allow escalation linked to other indices such as PPI and escalation dates of 1 January each year.

The specific detail requested per country is confidential information and therefore cannot be disclosed publicly. Should the Honourable Member require further clarity in this regard, he is welcome to contact the Honourable Minister of Minerals and Energy.

Question no.588

QUESTION PAPER DATE: FRIDAY, 28 March 2008

588: Mr. M Waters (DA) to ask the Minister of Minerals and Energy:

(1) What are the co-ordinates with regard to the mining rights on a certain farm in the Kempton Park area (Witfontein )R/33/151R

whether there are any restrictions which prohibit any mining from taking place near residential dwellings; if not, why not; if so, (a) what are the relevant details and (b) up to what distance from residential dwellings can mining take place?

REPLY:

Co ordinates on the remainder of the farm Witfontein No 15IR, wherein a mining permit has been issued.

DATUM: WGS 84

LO-Y

LO-X

70766.789

2883463.934

70676.433

2883953.612

70691.011

2884122.129

70780.737

2884125.445

70766.789

2883963.934

2(a) Yes, Section 48(1) of the MPRDA, restricts mining or prospecting in respect of land comprising a residential area, however Section 48(2) provides powers to the Minister to issue a right in respect of land mentioned above, if the Minister is satisfied that-

Having regard to the sustainable development of the mineral resources involved and national interest, it is desirable to issue it.

The right/permit will take place within the framework of national environmental management policies, norms and standards.

(b) Regulation 17(6)of Mine Health and Safety Act, provides that no mining operations are carried out under or within a horizontal distances of 100 metres from buildings, roads, railways, reserves, mine boundaries, any structure whatsoever.

Question no.551

QUESTION PAPER DATE: FRIDAY, 28March 2008

551: Mr. W D Spies (FF Plus) to ask the Minister of Minerals and Energy:

Whether an increase in electricity tariffs will also come into force on 1 April 2008 for neighboring countries to which South Africa supplies electricity; if not, why not; if so, what is the (a) current tariff and (b) percentage increase for (i) Namibia, (ii) Botswana, (iii) Mozambique, (iv) Lesotho, (v) Swaziland

RESPONSE:

The electricity tariffs to neighbouring utilities escalate at the agreed rates in their supply agreements. In most cases this escalation is equal to or higher than the NERSA approved escalation and comes into effect from 1 April each year. In some instances however agreements allow escalation linked to other indices such as PPI and escalation dates of 1 January each year.

The specific detail requested per country is confidential information and therefore cannot be disclosed publicly. Should the Honourable Member require further clarity in this regard, he is welcome to contact the Honourable Minister of Minerals and Energy.

QUESTION NUMBER 1189

DATE OF PUBLICATION IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER: 11 SEPTEMBER 2009

(INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NUMBER 16)

Adv H C Schmidt (DA) to ask the Minister of Mineral Resources:

In light of the appointment of a certain company (name furnished) to conduct an assessment of compliance in respect of the Mining Charter, (a) what is its mandate, (b) what is the date on which it must present its report to the department, (c) who are the (i) directors and (ii) members of this company and (d) what is the cost of commissioning the report?

REPLY

(a) The mandate of the company is to undertake an independent assessment of the cumulative progress (by the mining industry) against the targets of the Mining Charter, as agreed upon by all stakeholders prior to implementation of this Charter.

(b) End of September, 2009.

(c) (i) Ms. Kate Moloto and Mr. Titus Mpe.

(ii) Not applicable

(d) The report is commissioned at a total cost of R 3,659,172.00.

Question No. 1515

NATIONAL ASSEMBLY INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER

QUESTIONS FOR WRITTEN REPLY

Response by Hon. Buyelwa Sonjica. Minister of Minerals and Energy. To Adv HC Schmidt's

Parliamentarv Question No. 1515

A. Question:

Following recent allegations that PetroSA signed oil deals with associates of Mugabe,(sic) whether the Minister can indicate (a) when was the deal between Middle East South Africa Energy (MESA) and PetroSA entered into; (b) what the specific terms 0 the deal were; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details in each case; (c) whether PetroSA was aware of the UN Final Report by the Panel of Experts on the Illegal Exploration of Natural Resources and other forms of Wealth of the Democratic Republic of the Congo; if not, why not?

B. Response:

a) The agreement was signed by both parties on 17 June 2004 – effective for two years, commencing on 1 August 2004.

b) The agreement stipulates that MESA will supply condensate as a feedstock for the Mossel Bay Refinery at price that are dependent on the grade of condensate that would have been supplied to PetroSA.

(c) No. But at any rate, the report did not specifically mention DRC or MESA.

BACKGROUND

After the aforesaid condensate deal, MESA subsequently successfully bid for other spot deals for Reformate, amongst others, all of which had nothing to do with DRC.

Recent News

On 24th August 2008 the Sunday Times newspaper published a story in its business section that insinuates that PetroSA knowingly "dished out oil deals" to a consortium partly owned by foreign businessmen accused of being fronts for Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe.

PetroSA then placed it on record that in 2004 they concluded a tender wherein MESA Energy, a majority-owned South African company, was contracted to supply them with gas condensate. At the time three separate South African companies owned 51% of MESA. A Mauritian-registered company Pegasus Energy (Ltd) owned the remaining 49%.

A forensic audit to verify the legal and BEE status of MESA was conducted in accordance with PetroSA's policies. The decision to award MESA Energy this highly competitive tender, was based on PetroSA's stringent selection criteria, which considered factors such as pricing, BEE participation levels, and the ability to introduce various condensate grades.

It is also true that in January 2008, PetroSA purchased a spot cargo of Reformate from MESA.

Throughout these transactions PetroSA has conducted itself with professional integrity, putting at the forefront the best interests of South Africa. At no time before or after the two deals, was PetroSA ever informed of any allegations of impropriety concerning MESA or any of its partners.

It is therefore mischievous of the Sunday Times to insinuate that PetroSA knowingly conducted business in defiance of United Nations resolutions or sanctions. A fact is that PetroSA, in good faith, concluded two deals with .

Mesa Energy. Both deals were conducted in full compliance with PetroSA's internal processes which are aligned with PFMA Act.

Possible link between the "UN Final Report by the Panel of Experts on the illegal Exploration of Natural Resources and other forms of Wealth of the Democratic Republic of the Congo" and MESA http://www .natural-resources.ora/minerals/law/docs/pdf/ N0262179.pd

Among the Government departments interviewed by the Panel of Experts was the Department of Minerals and Energy of South Africa (p.54 of the UN Final Report). However, no names of officials interviewed were provided.

The central focus of the Panel's work was gathering information about politically and economically powerful groups involved in the exploitation activities / illegal exploration of natural resources and other forms of wealth of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), which are often highly criminalized. The UN Report's main focus is on the micro conflicts that have been provoked by the DRC civil war that have resulted in some groups, politically connected persons and high-ranking government officials from states involved in the conflict criminally exploiting the situation for self enrichment.

The report then goes further to explain the modus operandi of the said groups but has no specific mention of MESA Energy.

The person posing the questions seems to be of the opinion that there is a link between MESA (shareholders or individuals within MESA) and the entities alleged to be involved in the illegal dealings in DRC (from a Zimbabwe front) as shown in the extracts of the Report below. Unfortunately, a detailed investigation could not be conducted to prove beyond reasonable doubt that there is no such link.

Extracts from the Report that could be relevant to the questions posed are as follows:

"12. The regional conflict that drew the armies of seven African States into the Democratic Republic of the Congo has diminished in intensity, but the overlapping micro conflicts that it provoked continue. These conflicts are fought over minerals, farm produce, land and even tax revenues. Criminal groups linked to the armies of Rwanda, Uganda and Zimbabwe and the Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo have benefited from the micro conflicts. Those groups will not disband voluntarily even as the foreign military forces continue their withdrawals. They have built up a self-financing war economy centred on mineral exploitation.

13. Facilitated by South Africa and Angola, the Pretoria and Luanda Agreements have prompted the recent troop withdrawals from the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo. Welcome as they may be, these withdrawals are unlikely to alter the determination of Rwanda and Zimbabwe, and Ugandan individuals, to exercise economic control over portions of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The departure of their forces will do little to reduce economic control, or the means of achieving it, since the use of national armies is only one among many means for exercising it. All three countries have anticipated the day when pressure from the international community would make it impossible to maintain large forces in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The Governments of Rwanda and Zimbabwe, as well as powerful individuals in Uganda, have adopted other strategies for maintaining the mechanisms for revenue generation, many of which involve criminal activities, once their troops have departed.

17. Although troops of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces have been a major guarantor of the security of the Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo against regional rivals, its senior officers have enriched themselves from the country's mineral assets under the pretext of arrangements set up to repay Zimbabwe for military services. Now ZDF is establishing new companies and contractual arrangements to defend its economic interests in the longer term should there be a complete withdrawal of ZDF troops. New trade and service agreements were signed between the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Zimbabwe just prior to the announced withdrawal of ZDF troops from the diamond centre of Mbuji Mayi late in August 2002.

18. Towards the end of its mandate, the Panel received a copy of a memorandum dated August 2002 from the Defence Minister, Sidney Sekeramayi, to President Robert Mugabe, proposing that a joint Zimbabwe-Democratic Republic of the Congo company be set up in Mauritius to disguise the continuing economic interests of ZDF in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The memorandum states: "Your Excellency would be aware of the wave of negative publicity and criticism that the DRC-Zimbabwe joint ventures have attracted, which tends to inform the current United Nations Panel investigations into our commercial activities." It also refers to plans to set up a private Zimbabwean military company to guard Zimbabwe's economic investments in the Democratic Republic of the Congo after the planned withdrawal of ZDF troops. It states that this company was formed to operate alongside a new military company owned by the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

19. At the same time, local militias and local politicians have supplemented the role that State armies previously played in ensuring access to and control of valuable resources and diverting State revenue. The 'looting that was previously conducted by the armies themselves has been replaced with organized systems of embezzlement, tax fraud, extortion, the use of stock options as kickbacks and diversion of State funds conducted by groups that closely resemble criminal organizations.

20. Such activities have become increasingly prominent in the techniques of exploitation in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The Panel has identified three distinct groups engaged in activities in three different areas and refers to them as elite networks. These elite networks have control over a range of commercial activities involving the exploitation of natural resources, diversion of taxes and other revenue generation activities in the three separate areas controlled by the Government of the' Democratic Republic of the Congo, Rwanda and Uganda, respectively."

22. The elite network of Congolese and Zimbabwean political, military and commercial interests seeks to maintain its grip on the main mineral resources - diamonds, cobalt, copper, germanium - of the Government-controlled area. This network has transferred ownership of at least US$ 5 billion of assets from the State mining sector to private companies under its control in the past three years with no compensation or benefit for the State treasury of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

23. This network benefits from instability in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Its representatives in the Kinshasa Government and the Zimbabwe Defence Forces have fuelled instability by supporting armed groups opposing Rwanda and Burundi.

24. Even if present moves towards peace lead to a complete withdrawal of Zimbabwean forces, the network's grip on the richest mineral assets of the Democratic Republic of the Congo and related businesses will remain.

Zimbabwe's political-military elite signed six major trade and service agreements in August 2002 with the Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Reliable sources have told the Panel about plans to set up new holding companies to disguise the continuing ZDF commercial operations in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and a ZDF-controlled private military company to be deployed in the country to guard those assets

27. The key strategist for the Zimbabwean branch of the elite network is the Speaker of the Parliament and former National Security Minister, Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa. Mr. Mnangagwa has won strong support from senior military and intelligence officers for an aggressive policy in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. His key ally is a Commander of ZDF and Executive Chairman of COSLEG, General Vitalis Musunga Gava Zvinavashe. The General and his family have been involved in diamond trading and supply contracts in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. A long-time ally of President Mugabe, Air Marshal Perence Shiri, has been involved in military procurement and organizing air support for the pro- Kinshasa armed groups fighting in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo. He is also part of the inner circle of ZDF diamond traders who have turned Harare into a significant illicit diamond-trading centre.

28. Other prominent Zimbabwean members of the network include Brigadier General Sibusiso Busi Moyo, who is Director General of COSLEG. Brigadier Moyo advised both Tremalt and Oryx Natural Resources, which represented covert Zimbabwean military financial interests in negotiations with State mining companies of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Air Commodore Mike Tichafa Karakadzai is Deputy Secretary of COSLEG, directing policy and procurement. He played a key role in arranging the Tremalt cobalt and copper deal. Colonel Simpson Sikhulile Nyathi is Director of defence policy for COSLEG. The Minister of Defence and former Security Minister, Sidney Sekeramayi, coordinates with the military leadership and is a shareholder in COSLEG. The Panel has a copy of a letter from Mr. Sekeramayi thanking the Chief Executive of Oryx Natural Resources, Thamer Bin Said Ahmed AIShanfari, for his material and moral support during the parliamentary elections of 2000. Such contributions violate Zimbabwean law.

29. In June 2002, the Panel learned of a secret new ZDF diamond mining operation in Kalobo in Kasai Occidental run by Dube Associates. This company is linked, according to banking documents, through Colonel Tshinga Dube of Zimbabwe Defence Industries to the Ukrainian diamond and arms dealer Leonid Minim, who currently faces smuggling charges in Italy. The diamond mining operations have been conducted in great secrecy.

31. The techniques used by Mr. Forrest have since been replicated by Zimbabwean-backed entrepreneurs John Arnold Bredenkamp and Mr. AIShanfari. Mr. Bredenkamp, who has an estimated personal net worth of over $500 million, is experienced in setting up clandestine companies and sanctions-busting operations. Mr. AI-Shanfari has gained privileged access to the Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo and its diamond concessions in exchange for raising capital from some powerful entrepreneurs in the Gulf such as Issa a/-Kawari who manages the fortune of the deposed Amir of Qatar. Also working with ZDF is a convicted criminal based in South Africa, Nico Shefer, who has arranged for Zimbabwean officers to be trained in diamond valuation in Johannesburg. Mr. Shefer's company, Tandan Holdings, has a 50 per cent stake in Thorntree Industries, a joint venture diamond-trading company with ZDF.

32. Zimbabwean Billy Rautenbach headed a joint venture cobalt-mining company and was Chief Executive of Gecamines from November 1998 to March 2000. Although stripped of his cobalt concessions in Katanga, Mr. Rautenbach told the Panel that the Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo had offered his company, Ridgepointe International, mining rights to Gecamines concessions at Shinkolobwe, which include substantial deposits of uranium, copper and cobalt. Mr. Rautenbach's representatives said that any new agreement would be subject to the new mining code of the Democratic Republic of the Congo and any uranium mining operations would be open to inspections by the International Atomic Energy 

QUESTION NO: 1539

NATIONAL ASSEMBLYINTERNAL QUESTION PAPER

QUESTIONS FOR WRITTEN REPLY

1539. Mr LW (I D) to ask the Minister of Minerals and Energy:

(1) Whether public participation processeswere conducted regarding the Government's decision to build new nuclear power plant stations; if not, why not if so, how many submissions were received from public;

(2) Whether her department has considered the submissions; if not, whynot; if so, what are relevant details?

RESPONSES:

(1) No, this is OPE and DEAT's responsibility.

QUESTION 1544

NATIONAL ASSEMBLY INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER

QUESTIONS FOR WRITTEN REPLY

1544. Mr L W Greyling (ID) to ask the Minister of Minerals and Energy:

(1) Whether her department is currently running a wind source atlas programme if so (a) when did the programme start and (b) when will a comprehensive wind atlas be available to the public'

(2) Whether there have been any delays in the programme; if so what were the reasons for the delays?

Response:

1 (a) Yes, the programme started in May 2008

(b) The 1stiteration of the wind atlas, covering coastal areas of the Northern Western and Eastern provinces is planned for November 2009. The final comprehensive version (reports, facts sheets, web site, and database) of the atlas is planned for the 3rdquarter of 2012.

2. No delays