Court halts toxic mine sand removal

2012-07-02 13:19

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Johannesburg - The South Gauteng High Court in Johannesburg has put a halt to the removal of radioactive and toxic mine residue from an informal settlement in Mogale City, Beeld newspaper reported on Monday.

The interim interdict was granted on Friday to the Federation for a Sustainable Environment (FSE), represented by the Legal Resources Centre, against the National Nuclear Regulator (NNR) and the Mogale City Local Municipality.

It halted the removal of the sand from the Tudor Shaft Informal Settlement, where 5 000 people live, pending a court hearing next Tuesday, Beeld reported.

The mining group Mintails started removing the mining sand on Thursday, on the instruction of the municipality and the NNR.

In court papers, the FSE said it welcomed the removal of the toxic residue, but felt this should be done in a responsible way, and after an assessment of the effect it would have on the community's health.

FSE director Mariette Lieferink told the newspaper she had tried in vain for more than 10 years to persuade the municipality and the NNR to move the Tudor Shaft residents to an area where they could receive decent housing and services.

The court application was unopposed by the department of environmental affairs.
- SAPA
Read more on:    johannesburg  |  health and safety
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