Gabriel Lightbody saw and followed the looting of Aurora equipment in their shaft number 6 in Springs. Photo: Simphiwe Mbokazi.
Gabriel Lightbody saw and followed the looting of Aurora equipment in their shaft number 6 in Springs. Photo: Simphiwe Mbokazi.

Foreman watches as Aurora mine was looted

By Time of article published May 30, 2011

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A former Aurora Empowerment Systems engineering foreman who worked at the mine for 10 years said he watched in awe as the company he had worked for dismantled its mining equipment piece by piece.

Speaking to Business Report at his home in Springs on the East Rand, Gabriel Lightbody, said he conducted his own investigation and witnessed officials from Aurora and the New Reclamation Group looting scrap metal from mine shafts number four and six.

The looted steel was loaded on to the trucks and driven away. He followed a truck that eventually came to a stop at New Reclamation Group in Benoni where the steel was offloaded.

“At first they started at mine shaft number four, and then went to another shaft called Ndlovu Number six where they took steel from that plant.

“While they stripped the plant of its steel, it caught on fire, which was later extinguished by the looters.”

All this had happened last year between August and October, and pumps were taken earlier in February, he said.

“Aurora threw a lot of money away”, Lightbody said.

He said that he had worked for the company since 2001 when it was Pamodzi Gold and was paid a monthly salary of R22 000. However, when things started turning upside down at Aurora due to mismanagement and financial difficulties, his salary was drastically reduced and he was offered R60 a day.

He refused the offer and was put on unpaid leave till today.

Based on his experience at the company, and what he discovered in his investigations he believes that the company will never recover from the mess.

“The costs are too much to bear, they won’t recover. I don’t see that happening,” he said. – Ayanda Mdluli

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