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June, 06

Mokgosi Mining Company to quarry granite at Mahibitswane lands, about 10km south of Tobane.

Prospects for a new granite mine near Tobane are brighter than ever following approval of the project the by residents. On Friday, villagers held a kgotla meeting to discuss a request for a plot by Mokgosi Mining Company to mine granite at Mahibitswane lands, about 10km south of Tobane.

Residents expressed support for the project and said as long as the company followed the right channels of consultation there will be no problems. The kgotla meeting was called to clear unconfirmed claims by some residents that a certain company had destroyed cultural sites which are situated at Sojwane Hills, near the place sought by Mokgosi to mine granite However, during the kgotla meeting it became clear that the site sought by Mokgosi was far from the cultural sites at Sojwane Hills.

The residents, who were initially angry, calmed down after the confirmation of the site and a visit to the sight by area MP Ponatshego Kedikilwe on Friday. The residents welcomed the proposed project and gave the company the go ahead to apply for a plot from the land board and continue with its mining activities which would create jobs for Batswana.

Mokgosi Mining Company, managing director, Mokgosi Mokgosi, assured residents that his company will adhere to national environmental laws and not destroy the surroundings in any way.

Mokgosi added that should need for compensation arise, it will be done accordingly. He said his company has carried out an environment impact assessment study and that nearby fields will not be affected.

He said a lot of blasting would take place. He told residents that the mine that will have a lifespan of 10 to 30 years would employ about 50 people during its initial stages rising to 100 when in full production.

The granite will be used to manufacture tombstones, tables and floor tiles. Kedikilwe said he was happy that the confusion surrounding the mining of granite was finally solved and cautioned politicians whom he said promote street politics to stop misleading people by exploiting their ignorance.