Almost seven months ago, when he announced the gazetting of Mining Charter 3, mineral resources minister Gwede Mantashe was at pains to point out two things, both of which have been proven to be incorrect. He claimed the charter represented a consensus of stakeholders following extensive discussions. With a peripheral view of some of those discussions, it is clear that what he called consensus was a process of the government spelling out the charter, stakeholders protesting and the government insisting its plan was the only way to go. Probably out of relief to have avoided the previous version of the charter, the industry did not challenge his assertion vigorously. Fast-forward six months and the Minerals Council announces it’s taking Mantashe’s department to court over the regulation on charter implementation. Mantashe’s first claim has been shown to be wishful thinking. His second assertion was that his version of the charter was “an important contributory element to efforts aime...

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