Tendele’s 2019 negotiation with hold outers in Ophondweni

In May 2019,  Tendele Mining stated that unless it could find “common ground” with the Directly Affected Communities (DACs), they would withdraw from negotiations and request arbitration or go to court.

In a letter to the Ophondweni Directly Affected Community (DAC) on May 15 2019, Tendele’s business development manager, Nathi Kunene, set out the terms of a formal compensation offer, both in English and isiZulu.

Following the meeting with the Ophondweni “Group of 15” in the presence of the DMR (Department of Mineral Resources) on April 16 2019, this letter serves as a Formal Written Offer to the (15) Ophondweni DAC members listed below.

“It is also note (sic) that DMR stated that if the Mine and Community cannot find common ground and a way forward, they (DMR) will have no choice but to withdraw and terminate the Section 54 process, and the mine will then have the choice of requesting arbitration process (that will simply apply the law and look at commercial values in the area) and/or hand the matter over to the ITB (Ingonyoma Trust Board) . . . to follow a legal process.

The value of the offer made by the MINE will differ from homestead to homestead (as each homestead is unique), but each offer will be based on the same Protocol that will be used in the negotiations.


In the above meeting, Tendele explained and the DMR confirmed that the “upset allowance” or “baseline payment” does not exist in law, and in order to finalize the relocation process, we have increased our offer in terms of the upset allowance from R148,000 to R200,000.

In order for the Mine to make a fair offer the following steps need to take place

– A Mine representative be allowed to measure the DAC Homestead (understand the size of each dwelling, the improvements, gardens, etc) to complete an information sheet.

– All family graves be shown to the mine

– One on one negotiations to take place between the Home owner and the Mine

– A calculation sheet to be used in the negotiations

– A formal offer to be made a negotiated

– Agreements to be signed (a basic draft agreement was attached for homeowners reference)  

Please note that offer on this letter will also be extended to the 52 families/houses including those who have already signed the contracts. This offer concludes the matter only for the 67 houses and individual agreements will now be negotiated with the families separately.

It is hereby noted that the offer had been made to concerned group that represents the families specified above with an understanding that the said group will convey the message/offer to their constituency which in this case is the families concerned. The group has not accepted the offer pending their consultation with the families that they represent.

If individual negotiations are not concluded with all the Ophondweni DAC Community (67) houses and if the Mine is not able to start Mining and all the agreements are not signed by 31 May 2019, the entire offer to the Ophondweni Community will lapse. The Mine’s funding is (sic) obtained from commercial banks will terminate on 31 May 2019, if we can’t demonstrate our ability to relocate families and start mining.

>> Click here to read the original document: Formal offer to the Ophondweni DAC “Group of 15”