Sphiwe Mazibuko’s powerful film exposes the intimidation of anti-mining activists, in South Africa, on the Wild Coast and Zululand. Xolobeni residents have fought for 10 years to prevent the Australian company, Mineral Commodities Limited, from mining their titanium rich dunes. The unwavering response of the Pondo people to protect their traditional lands, a paradise where they have lived for over 1500 years, has been met by increasing intimidation and violence that culminated in the violent murder of Sikhosiphi “Bazooka” Rhadebe, on 22 March 2016, a week after the completion of this film. Two men posing as police arrived in the middle of the night and shot Rhadebe 8 times in the head in front of his 15 year old son. The next person on the hit list, Nonhle Mbuthuma, is featured in this film together with three other activists on the Wild Coast whose lives have been threatened.
In Zululand, mining activists from Fuleni, Somkhele and Melmoth also face death threats. Reverend Mavuso is currently in hiding for fear of his life, while the police have been notified of recent death threats to Phila Ndimande. Bongani Pearce’s vehicle was burned after a protest march following 8 years of being silenced by corrupt traditional leaders and exploited by Somkhele Tendele’s Somkhele coal mine.
The film was commissioned by Mupo Foundation (now EarthLore) and funded by the European Commission.