The Democratic Alliance welcomes the historic ruling in favour of the Amadiba Crisis Committee and the people of the Umgungundlovu area of Xolobeni on the Wild Coast, which declared that the mineral resources minister must obtain consent from the community, as the holder of rights on land, prior to granting any mining rights.
This judgement has hopefully brought closure to a community that has been fighting against the exploitation of their land for more than a decade.
The ruling also flies in the face of comments made by MEC Oscar Mabuyane in the DEDEAT Portfolio Committee last week, where he said this matter was a foregone conclusion and that he fully supports the actions of Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe.
The area has been plagued by conflict over the proposed mine and has seen every dirty trick imaginable being used to secure mining rights, including the falsifying of lists of members in support of the project.
This ruling has given the people of Xolobeni a voice in what happens to their land, giving them security of tenure on the land on which they live and farm.
A DA government will uphold the land rights of traditional communities and ensure that they derive maximum economic benefits from its use.