Police threaten Mapela Area Community Members with arrestPublished by MAC on 2006-12-11
Police threaten Mapela Area Community Members with arrest
by Jubilee South Africa
11th December 2006
Police are on the scene of Mapela area ploughing fields, where members of the community have removed a fence put up by Anglo Platinum. Since 23 November 2006 the Mapela area communities, particularly Ga-Chaba and Mothlohlo villages have been ploughing their fields in defiance of Anglo Platinum’s claim that it has the right to that land. Over the last 2 ½ weeks the police have tried to intimidate the community who have been protecting their fields. Last night Anglo Platinum’s PPL Mine subcontractors put up additional fencing to keep the community off their land. This morning community members took down much of the 3km of fencing. One policeman arrived, threatening to arrest them. Community members around the Mapela area are mobilising in support and solidarity to protect their ploughing fields and their right to this land.
Attorneys acting on behalf of the Ga-Chaba community will be in the Johannesburg High Court this Wednesday, 13 December arguing that Anglo Platinum and its PPL Mine have no right to take this community’s land. Paul Thobane, one of the community members from neighbouring Mothlohlo stated today that “We are here protecting our land because Anglo Platinum is busy making a fence to keep us off our ploughing fields, while we are also challenging them in court. This is against our democratic rights. Unemployment is a major problem for the whole world, and we as the people of this area depend on the ploughing fields as there is no other source of food. If we do not have these fields, we will die.”
For more information please contact:
Paul Thobane (currently on the scene), David Moselakgomo (currently on the scene) or Anne Mayher (Jubilee South Africa) 082 398 6882 email@example.com