A couple of months ago I went to the very first premiere of something I made. It was a real premiere replete with a red carpet, popcorn and a screen big enough to have to tilt your head back slightly to watch the documentary film.
The untitled project is a short documentary that attempts to tell a the brief yet compelling story of women who work in the mining industry. It was a commission for Women in Mining South Africa (WiMSA), a non-governmental organisation that through policy, lobbying and mentorship fights for for the inclusivity and empowerment of women in the sector.
The very short trailer is glimpse into what we cover in the 30 minute runtime and has more information where to watch the full version in the caption.
Being a two person crew was both challenging and deceptively easy. For this project I worked with a friend and colleague, Lesedi Molefi. I think we got a lot more done and done quicker because of this dynamic but we were both keenly aware of how much better work we would have been able to produce if we had more resources. That said, starting with what you have, where you are remained the guiding principle.
What I can say about this first little documentary of mine is that it tested me in ways I have grown to appreciate. It is my first and I have to constantly remind myself of the fact that it is an experiment, one I will learn and grow from. Am I proud, absolutely! Do I have a way to go, absolutely! It’s taken me a while to share because I had to work my up to believing this myself.
NOTE: Article first appeared in The Citizen newspaper on May 13, 2014.
Rand Uranium mine on the West Rand will enter into talks with concerned residents in Bekkersdal this week over unused land in the area.
The land close to the mine, which is owned by the mine, has been standing empty for nearly 30 years.
Residents in Bekkersdal attempted to occupy the land earlier this year but were stopped when the mine issued an interdict against their action in January.
Thabang Wesi, spokesperson for the Greater Westonaria Concerned Residents’ Association, said “they (Rand Uranium mine) withdrew the charges because they understand that we need this land”.
Residents were not stopped by the interdict but by “other pressing issues”, said Wesi.
“We need that land. It’s vacant and there’s no development happening there. Bekkersdal must grow like other townships.”
The only residents seen by The Citizen on site yesterday were miners leaving to go home and municipality workers paving a new road to connect the mine to the township.
Wesi described the vacant land as being as big as Bekkersdal itself. “The mine is in the township but doing nothing for the people who live there. They are only developing the land and not the people,” said Wesi.
The current management of the mine also stands accused of not contributing to the community trust fund.
“They have to contribute – if not they must go” said Wesi.