'Political pollution' a problem on mining company boards: NGO
Politicians becoming board members of mining companies is becoming a problem, the Bench Marks Foundation says.
"A lot of the problems arise from what we call 'political pollution'," foundation researcher David van Wyk said in Johannesburg.
"Politicians becoming board members is becoming a problem."
The foundation was releasing a study entitled "Policy Gap 6, Living in the Platinum Minefields".
It looked at six mining communities and examined what had changed, what had improved, and what needed to be done.
The companies surveyed were Anglo Platinum, Impala Platinum, Lonmin, Xstrata, Aquarius, and Royal Bafokeng Platinum Ltd.
The Bench Marks Foundation is an independent, faith-based organisation monitoring how well companies perform in the field of social responsibility.
Van Wyk said there were examples in the study's report of political involvement.
He read from the report: "... The Bench Marks Foundation is disappointed by the [Black Economic Empowerment] information contained in the Aquarius report to the effect that Zwelake Sisulu, HRH Princess Zenani Mandela-Dlamini, and Malibongwe Women's Development Agency are all beneficiaries of Aquarius shareholding."
Van Wyk said there was political pollution of South Africa's political landscape because senior politicians were being absorbed into these mining companies.