The Department of Mineral Resources said on Thursday it has noted the judgment by the North Gauteng High Court. File Image: IOL

PRETORIA - The Department of Mineral Resources said on Thursday it has noted the judgment by the North Gauteng High Court in favour of the people of Xolobeni in the Eastern Cape that they cannot issue mining rights without the community's permission.

"The department is studying the judgment, and will pronounce itself on the matter in due course," said the department in a statement.

On Thursday, judge Annali Basson declared that Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe must obtain consent from the community, as the holder of rights on land prior to granting any mining rights to mineral resources commodities.

Members of the community have been for a while demanding that the courts grant them the power to refuse mining companies the right to extract titanium at the Umgungundlovu area in Xolobeni on the Wild Coast.

The community of Xolobeni had concerns about displacement from their homes and grazing lands, as well as environmental degradation.

- African News Agency (ANA)