Media Announcements

Wesizwe shares findings of the Stakeholder Perception Survey

28 February 2015

Wesizwe shares findings of the Stakeholder Perception Survey

In the last quarter of 2014, Wesizwe Platinum commissioned an important stakeholder perception survey to update and expand on its understanding of the local socio-economic situation and to provide essential insights. The research objectives of the survey were to obtain qualitative information from community leaders in order to update the Wesizwe stakeholder map on key strategic local stakeholders; to measure and quantify changes in community expectations and sentiment since the 2011 survey; and to update and expand on Wesizwe’s understanding of the local socio-economic situation. With work underway on shaft-sinking at the Bakubung Platinum Mine, and the all important ramp-up phase in progress, the time was right for a follow-up survey to be undertaken in 2014.

A combination of qualitative and quantitative research was undertaken in the form of in-depth interviews and a community survey during the months of November and December last year. For the 20 in-depth interviews, key stakeholders were identified and interviewed face-to-face at a venue convenient to them. These participants were drawn from the lists of regular attendees at the BPM Stakeholder Forum. Interviewees represented a number of stakeholder groups such as local business, special interest groups (ie. health and education), local government, and other political role-players in the area.

The community survey element saw a total sample of 1070 completed surveys which were administrated by appointed G3 workers over a period of two weeks in the villages of Ledig and Phatisma. Prior to the survey taking place, a communication programme made local residents aware of the survey process through posters, pamphlets, and Ledig Sun features.

 

The initial findings were prepared in four key categories and will be presented for discussion in the community in more detail later, but below are the highlights. The complete survey findings will be presented across various communications channels in the community throughout the month of March.

 

Socio-Economic Findings

  • Unsustainable unemployment rate, especially amongst the youth, and in Phatisma.
  • The rate of secondary school completion has increased but does not translate into economic inclusion
  • The hospitality sector remains the main employer, whilst self-employment is very low.
  • The Local Municipality faces numerous service delivery challenges, of which the most pertinent is water.
  • Mining development, such as BPM, has triggered an influx of people to the area, driving the growth of informal settlements

 

Communication, engagement and relationships

  • There are entrenched divisions in community perceptions, with roughly an equal number of people feeling positively and negatively about Wesizwe and Bakubung Platinum Mine.
  • Wesizwe’s communication channels reach their intended audiences, but there is limited cascading of information from forums.
  • Wesizwe’s Regional Office is well-known and well perceived, but accessibility is a challenge.

 

Bakubung Platinum Mine’s impact to date and going forward

  • The majority of respondents feel life has improved since Wesizwe’s arrival in the area.
  • Most prominent perceived impacts of BPM are on improvement to schools, local employment and skills development.
  • The in-migration of new residents was the negative impact most strongly felt.
  • Stakeholders expect to benefit significantly more when BPM commences full operation in 2018.
  • Wesizwe has excellent projects that address real needs, but can improve its consultation.

 

Community Dynamics

  • Community divisions prevent the local area from realising its full development potential.


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