05/10/2017 06:33 SAST | Updated 05/10/2017 06:33 SAST

Mining Bosses Openly Snub Mining Minister

The Chamber of Mines boycotted an event where Mosebenzi Zwane was the keynote speaker.

Waldo Swiegers/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Mosebenzi Zwane, South Africa's mineral resources minister.

In what appears to be a total breakdown in the relationship between the mining industry and Mining Minister Mosebenzi Zwane, industry bosses have openly called for Zwane to be replaced, The Times reported on Thursday.

Industry bosses also boycotted an address given by Zwane during which he reportedly said the ANC's national elective conference was already decided.

According to The Times, mining bosses from companies such as Harmony Gold, PwC, Sibanye Gold and Anglo American were asked about the one thing they wanted the government to do about mining. This was reportedly asked in an online poll on Wednesday morning.

A new mining minister was the answer given by 41% of respondents, while 26.6% called for the controversial Mining Charter to be scrapped.

During his address, Zwane reportedly said that the ANC's elective conference had been decided at branch level and that the result was already known in the party.

"We already know who will be president... it's a done deal. The policies won't change. In January there will be a new leadership and policies will remain the same," Zwane reportedly said.

Chamber of Mines CEO Roger Baxter told The Times that the boycotting of the event by so many mining bosses was no coincidence.

"It was not an impetuous decision. Not only has minister Zwane published a charter whose full implementation would destroy the industry, he also recklessly sought to introduce a moratorium on approving new rights or amending rights. He did so on the basis of his refusal to engage on the issues," he said.