- The KwaZulu-Natal provincial government express their distress over the influx of people heading into KwaHlathi village near Ladysmith in response to diamonds being apparently sighted in the area
- The National Department of Minerals and Energy (DMRE) has been notified of the situation by the Department of Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs
- The DMRE responded by promising to deploy teams into the area to conduct an inspection of the illegal mining site
In spite of the worry raised by The KwaZulu-Natal provincial government, KwaHlathi village has succumbed to a large influx of people swarming in for over a week following allegations of diamonds being in the area. This inevitably resulted in illegal mining being conducted in the area.
According to Provincial Government Spokesperson Lennox Mabaso, the Department of Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs were instructed to notify the National Department of Minerals and Energy (DMRE) of the situation so that they may respond appropriately.
The Department of Minerals and Energy (DMRE) has responded with a pledge to assign teams consisting of the department’s enforcement and compliance unit as well as officials from the Council for Geoscience and the Council for Mineral Technology to conduct an inspection of the sites.
Quartz crystals or diamonds?
As some believe that they are mining quartz crystals others are convinced that there are diamonds with social media flooded by posts of people involved in the mining activities in celebration under the pretext of their newly apparent fortune.
Reports by TimesLIVE revealed that the provincial government stated that it would work closely with the SAPS, the DMRE, the traditional communities, traditional leadership as well as the local and district municipalities.
They hope to defuse a potentially harmful situation by notifying as many members of the community as possible.
Social media response
Earlier, Briefly News reported that in a short clip shared online, a crowd of at least 100 people stand gathered in an empty field. Armed with small carving tools and buckets, the men and woman enthusiastically search the land for any of the rumoured treasures.
They've also shared that local SAPS officials have been notified of the situation and have been tasked with bringing order to the excited community.
t seems the shared sentiment amongst social media users is that government leave the struggling community alone. Many agree that if discovered, the precious stones belong to the local community and mining of the land should therefore not be privatised.
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Source: Briefly News