Community leader assassinated for resisting mining efforts

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Mining not only wreaks havoc on the surrounding environment, but destroys the social fabric of a community. It was with great sadness that we heard of the killing of Sikosiphe ‘Bazooka’ Rhadebe, the Chairman of the Amadiba Crisis Committee. This murder follows on the heels of too many others and our prayers are with the family and the community.

The Amadiba Crisis Committee has sent out the following appeal which we ask everyone to share:

Dear Friends

Many of you may have heard by now of the assassination last night of the Chairperson of the Amadiba Crisis Committee (ACC), Bazooka Rhadebe (see also statement below from the ACC). No other conclusion can be drawn other than that his assassination was orchestrated by the local pro-mining lobby, as a desperate attempt to remove the widespread community resistance to the proposed mining project at Xolobeni, Wild Coast. The ACC was elected by the affected communities to represent them in the fight against the proposed mining, and has managed to hold the mining company and the force of the state at bay for close to a decade. There is evidence that other anti-mining activists are now at risk.

We therefore call on you to support this struggle at this critical time in the following ways:

  1. Draft a statement by your organisation or together with other organisations stating your solidarity to the communities and the family of Bazooka, condemning the assassination, and calling on the Minister of the Department of Minerals Resources (DMR) to intervene to stop the mining right application process and to protect the anti-mining activists and communities. To sign on to an existing civil society statement, go to or email Busi or call Busi on 021 447 1000

  2. Please circulate this appeal and your statements to all your networks, national and international organisations, calling on them to support as well

  3. Appeal to your networks and to the general public to contact the highest offices of the DMR and inundate them with demands to intervene to stop the mining right application process and to protect the anti-mining activists and communities. Here are the contact details of the highest offices of the DMR:

Minister of Mineral Resources: Mr Mosebenzi Zwane

Tel: 012 444 3999

Fax: 012 444 3145

Email: (PA)

Deputy Minister of Mineral Resources: Mr Godfrey Oliphant

Tel: 012 444 3956

Fax: 012 341 2228

Email: (PA)

Acting Director-General: Department of Mineral Resources: Mr David Msiza

Tel: 012 444 3000

Fax: 012 341 2228

Email: / (PA) / (Director: Office of the DG)

  1. Solidarity Fund: The Amadiba Crisis Committee (ACC) urgently requires funds to assist Bazooka's family, for transport, and for continuing the struggle and protecting activists in this dangerous moment. You can make donations to the following bank account. Please include the reference as 'Bazooka Cause'. Please also forward this request for financial assistance on to your networks as well as funding agencies that may be willing to support the ACC.

Sustaining the Wild Coast First National Bank Randburg Acc no: 62157997639 Code: 254005 Swift: FIRNZAJJ Physical address: cnr Main Ave/Republic Rd, Randburg

Reference: 'Bazooka Cause'

For further information, contact: Mzamo Dlamini 072 194 0949; Nonhle Mbuthuma 076 3592982