- - Wednesday, February 29, 2012

ZIMBABWE

Government set to take over mine

HARARE | Zimbabwe’s black-empowerment minister said Wednesday he will proceed with a takeover of the country’s biggest platinum mine if the South African owners don’t comply with orders to hand over more stakes in the company to blacks.

Minister Saviour Kasukuwere said there is “no compromise” over the eventual handover of 51 percent of the company’s stock as required by “indigenization” laws.


Last year, Zimplats became the first foreign-owned company to cede 10 percent of its holdings to a local community trust. Zimbabwe has ordered the company to hand over another 30 percent by mid-March.

South African-based Implats owns 87 percent of existing shares in Zimplats.

Zimbabwe and South Africa are the world’s largest suppliers of platinum, a corrosion-resistant metal with a wide range of industrial uses that is priced higher than gold.

Mr. Kasukuwere told the Associated Press Wednesday that a proposed visit by Implats‘ chief executive to discuss the matter would not change the government’s decision.

He said he has no plans to meet with Implats CEO David Brown.

SOUTH AFRICA

Ranger among 4 poaching arrests

JOHANNESBURG | South African wildlife officials say a ranger is among four Kruger National Park workers arrested on rhinoceros-poaching charges.

In a statement Wednesday, the national parks department said the four were arrested Tuesday by officers investigating the killing of two rhinos whose corpses were found earlier that day.

The animals had been shot and stripped of their horns, which are prized among some who believe they have medicinal powers.

The parks department says the ranger arrested is among scores who have been striking for higher pay since early February.

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