Community Alerts/ Francina Nkosi/Limpopo/18 May 2017

There are 25 villages under Seleka, each with a headman. The headmen mediate between the community and the Council. The role of the Council is to resolve all issues on the villages and communicate any information to the headmen. The council is elected by village representatives and by the King. People from Seleka village are mainly working in Lephalale town. Some also work on farms around the village and in the village clinic, schools etc.There is no development in the villages. There is only one clinic. There is no post-school education.

The megaprojects are a disaster. There is no benefit of having the mines and power stations nearby. They do not recognize the Chief; they do not come to Seleka to consult the community. They just do their own thing and lie to the Council.

The mega – projects have led to an increase in HIV/AIDS, TB and asthma. Many people are dying because of these illnesses. There is an increase in both air pollution and land pollution, grass does not grow as it used to, rivers have dried up there is no water here. We are going to die of hunger if we cannot farm here and community projects have closed down.

As the Council, we do not know what we can do. We are just ordinary people, we do not have money and resources – we are not supported financially like the municipal council is. We can’t do the necessary education and awareness – rising amongst the community. Community leaders are being bought off by the mines. As the Council, we never agreed to have the mines here.

We cannot chase the mines and power stations away because people need the jobs but they must be socially responsible to the communities.

The mines and power stations must:

– Assist with building clinics in Seleka.

– Assist with the education and up skilling of local youth.

– Assist with building a university/FET.

– Hire local people.

– Upgrade the office of the King and resource the office so that the King and Council can do their work properly.

– Stop using labour brokers. By Francina Nkosi