(1) The department of Water and Sanitation issued a Directive to the company referred to by the Honourable Member on 6 March 2020. The Directive, amongst others, outlined transgressions by the company and requested a remedial action plan. Further, the Directive instructed the company to:
- Appoint an independent environmental consultant to compile and submit a rehabilitation plan for addressing remediation of overflowing manholes and possible groundwater contamination remediation plan and all areas affected by the activity, to the Department within 14 days upon receipt of the directive.
- Implement all the recommendations contained in the rehabilitation plan and remedy the areas affected by the water use activities within thirty (30) working days of Departmental approval of the rehabilitation plan.
(2) In the aftermath of the follow up inspection on 10 February 2020 and 18 May 2020, it was observed that there were no mining activities that were taking place. The Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS) has no records of the company’s application for water use authorisation on the Eelectronic Water Use Licence Authorisation Application System (e-WULAAS).
(3) (a) Further administrative enforcement action was taken by issuing another directive dated 11 March 2020 following the notice of intention to issue a directive. After the issuance of the directive, the mine requested a meeting with the department but due to lock down the meeting was postponed.
(b) The letter of appointment of the Environmental Consultant was received after the issuance of the directive dated 11 March 2020 indicating that the Environmental Consultant will compile the rehabilitation plan for the affected areas as per the directive. Based on the follow up inspection of 18 May 2020 there have been no mining activities taking place.