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Rasimone Village

Rasimone Village

  • Author: Ilan_Pomegranite
  • Date Posted: Nov 9, 2017
  • Category:

In 2004, Jacobeth was returning home from a long day at work at Bafokeng Rasimone Platinum Mine when her life suddenly took a tragic turn. “I found my sister standing on the corner by the mines, I was surprised to see her standing there, when I got out of the car I was told that my son had died.” Rebonepuso Lekoro, 9, and his friend Boitumelo Mfalapitsa, 10, drowned in an abandoned pit where they got trapped in the mud while swimming. “I was amazed because my son was a swimmer, I found the water to be so innocent. I asked ‘how did you see that there are people in the water?’ They said, ‘look – there are their clothes.’ When I looked, there were the clothes that I was preparing for him that morning to go to school. That was when I accepted that I have a funeral, my son was dead.”

Jacobeth needed to know who owned the land, and travelled to the Department of Mineral Resources in Klerksdorp where she found out that farm “103 JQ” was owned by the Royal Bafokeng Nation, although there was a transaction between the Bafokeng and SA Ferrochrome. While to this day, nobody has taken responsibility for the death of Jacobeth’s son, SA Ferrochrome came forward and contributed R5000 towards the funeral. A letter from the company stated: “The community would like to send their sincere condolences to the Lekoro family for the tragic loss of their child.” SA Ferrochrome and Bafokeng Rasimone Platinum Mine deny that the land is used for mining purposes; it is considered “no man’s land” by mining inspectors. However, community members dispute this, claiming the land was used for mining purposes and should have been rehabilitated. Thirteen years later, Jacobeth’s pain remains. “I have lost my son, and it is because of this mining industry. I lost my son and there is no way something – money or what – is going to compensate me. There is a hole in my heart till today.”

Jacobeth Lekoro, 56, Rasimone, North West, Western Limb

Jacobeth Lekoro, 56, Rasimone, North West, Western Limb

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