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The high court in Pretoria has ruled that the minister of mineral resources has no lawful authority to grant a right to mine in Xolobeni on the Wild Coast unless full and informed consent has been obtained from community. In the legal challenge brought by 128 Umgungundlovu community members against the minister of mineral resources, Transworld Energy and Mineral Resources and four others, the community argued that a mineral right cannot be granted in terms of the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act (MPRDA), without the consent of a community as required by the Interim Protection of Informal Land Rights Act. Disputes over the potential mining of the titanium-rich dunes of Xolobeni by Transworld, a subsidiary of Australian-listed Mineral Commodities, have raged on for over a decade and even resulted in a number of deaths in the area. In August mining minister Gwede Mantashe proposed the extension of a moratorium on the awarding of mining rights for the area as tensions con...

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