Navachab Gold Mine – Boost for Local Bid

Erongo Region traditional authorities have reiterated their call that new ownership of the Navachab gold mine does not fall entirely into foreign hands.

Traditional leaders of the region met with the Minister of Mines and Energy, Isak Katali, at Karibib on Tuesday to see how government could intervene in the sale of the mine owned by AngloGold Ashanti. They want the legislation of a legal framework that could empower indigenous communities to have a more direct stake in local resources.

A consortium consisting of Giyani Gold Corporation, a South African company that has partnered with well-known Namibian businessman Knowledge Katti, who is also its executive vice-president, the Erongo Regional Foundation, Havana Investment and Epangelo Mining Company are shortlisted bidders for the purchase of the mine in Karibib.

“We are seeking government assistance as they are the legislators on how to accommodate Namibian nationals to strengthen sovereignty ownership of natural resources,” said Frans !Gaoseb, spokesperson of the Erongo Traditional Authorities Trust.

He urged government to do away with laws that restrict indigenous people from owning natural resources, as ownership would in turn empower communities through employment creation, roads improvement, schools upgrading and grants.

Katti has reaffirmed his commitment to offer a 10 percent shareholding in the Navachab mine, with an estimated value of N$300 million, to the Erongo Regional Foundation, under which the traditional authorities of the !Oeumldaggeracircn, Zeraeua, Dauredaman, Topnaar and Tsoaxudaman fall, should they win the bid.

Giyani Gold is a South African precious metal company.

!Gaoseb said it would be beneficial for the traditional authorities to have the shareholding as that would give them access to credit to purchase equipment to build infrastructure in their areas of residence.

He explained that all the mentioned traditional authorities would have equal shares and all dividends from mining profits would be distributed equally among the authorities.

“Our strategic and economic development plan will complement Vision 2030,” he said.

It is not clear who will win the Navachab bid, but according to some media reports, United Kingdom-based QKR Corporation, a private mining group, has won the bid to buy the mine for N$1.4 billion.

Source : New Era