President Jacob Zuma Picture: Kopano Tlape/GCIS
Parliament – President Jacob Zuma on Thursday threw his weight behind the controversial revised Mining Charter published by Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane.

"Yes, I believe firstly, the minister gave the briefing and consultation, including the cabinet and what the minister is doing has been approved by the Cabinet,"

Zuma said in the National Assembly during his quarterly question-and-answer session. The President brushed aside criticism of the charter by the Chamber of Mines of SA, unions, and his own ruling African National Congress, who are concerned about the impact the charter could have on jobs in the sector.

The revised targets in the mining sector includes mining houses should have 30% black ownership to be shared among employees, communities and black entrepreneurs.

Mining rights holders who have complied with the previous target of 26% have to “top up” to 30% within 12 months.

Those applying for prospecting rights would be required to have a “minimum of 50% plus one black person shareholding”.

In the wake of the charter being gazetted, the Chamber of Mines threatened to take the minister to court to interdict from implementing the targets.