Riverbed miner challenges EMA prohibition order

Source: Riverbed miner challenges EMA prohibition order | Newsday (News)

BY DESMOND CHINGARANDE

A LOCAL mining company has approached the High Court seeking the suspension of an order issued by the Environmental Management Agency (EMA) barring it from carrying out mining activities along Angwa River.

Angel Hill Mining Company is seeking to have EMA’s actions be declared unlawful and have the agency interdicted from interfering with its mining activities.

It cited Environment minister Mangaliso Ndlovu, and EMA director-general Aaron Chigona as respondents.

Mine manager Stan Botsh, in his affidavit, said the company approached the court in 2019 seeking an order after the respondents had refused to issue a sand extraction permit which was required to start alluvial mining along Angwa River.

Botsh claimed that over the preceding months, EMA had been extorting money from the company, threatening them with closure if it refused to pay.

Angel Hill further alleged that on March 10, the respondents issued an order instructing it to cease mining operations and demanding an $800 000 fine.

“The need to act arose on March 10, 2021 when the second respondent (EMA) made an order stopping the mining activities by the applicant. The order also imposed an exorbitant and unjustified fine in the sum of $800 000 (on) the applicant,” Botsh submitted.

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