Lily Mine ancestors need to be appeased - traditional healers

2016-02-17 17:59
(News24 Correspondent)

(News24 Correspondent)

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Barberton – The ancestors of the Lily Mine in Mpumalanga needed to be appeased in order for things to go well with the rescue mission and future mining operations, leaders of the Traditional Healers Organisation (THO) said on Wednesday.

THO national co-ordinator Phephisile Maseko was responding after Lomshiyo traditional leader, Chief Tikhontele Dlamini, told journalists that Vantage Goldfields, which has its headquarters in Sydney, Australia, did not perform an ancestral ritual to ask permission to operate the mine, based in Louisville near Barberton.

"Every place has its owners. The mine is owned by the ancestors. The question is, if the [mining company] got permission from the ancestors, under which chief did they do the ritual? Whites dismissed this as something that does not exist because of the traditions they came with," said Maseko.

Maseko said construction workers at the Medupi Power Station in Lephalale, Limpopo, were also failing to complete the project because the ancestors weren't informed of the developments.

Appease the ancestors

"This thing is the same thing that is happening in Lephalale. When you ask them, when will they complete the project, they will tell you 'tomorrow'. Tomorrow they say there's something technical and mechanical, but they do not see that it is ancestors.

"This is the problem – a lot of people do not understand things in the way they should. They want to tell people that this will not work or that will work, but the important thing as traditional healers is for people to appease the ancestors."

He said they were supposed to give hope to families. "Burn incense and play drums so that the owners of the land can open their hands, because we are regretting everything we have done without their permission," Maseko explained.

Maseko said, if given permission, THO members could go to Lily Mine and perform the rituals there. 

"We are pleading that this is the way to communicate with the ancestors," she said.

Lily Mine acting spokesperson Cyril Ripinga, who is head of communications at the Nkomazi local municipality, said the THO was welcome to perform their rituals at the mine, but should get permission first.

"Anyone who wants to come as long as they consult Chief Tikhontele before doing their rituals," said Ripinga.

Read more on:    mbombela  |  lily mine collapse

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