S Africa mine expansion plan brings death, division to KZN community

A small village in rural South Africa is caught up in a dispute over a controversial expansion plan of Somkhele, one of South Africa’s largest open coal mines in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) province.

The expansion plan is dividing friends and neighbours and pitting businesses against traditions and the environment.


Now tensions have been heightened by the killing of Fikile Ntshangase, a 65-year-old environmental activist who was killed in front of her grandson outside her house in October.


Ntshangase was at the forefront of a challenge against the expansion of the Somkhele mine.