Lonmin parties sign peace accord

2012-09-06 06:50

Parties involved in the Marikana talks signed the peace accord this morning to pave the way for wage negotiations.

The accord was signed just after 1am, said Lonmin mine spokeswoman Sue Vey.

“This is the first step in the right direction. We hope the workers will also sign soon.”

The Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) and Marikana workers’ representatives did not sign the accord.

The accord levelled the ground for wage negotiations. It also included a commitment to create a peaceful work environment.

National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) chairman of health and safety, Peter Bailey, said the accord allowed for negotiations to start a day after the signing.

The talks that led to the signing took a lot of effort and patience, he said.

“It was a long road to travel. The CCMA will from here on facilitate the talks. The negotiators are required to reach a settlement within 30 days.”

Worker representative Zolisa Bodlwana said miners would never be party to the peace accord.

Striking workers had formed their own committee to represent them at the negotiations.

“We felt as if we were in a wrong meeting because they kept on insisting on signing the accord. We left because an accord does not help us in any way.”

Bodlwana said a feedback meeting would be held with miners in Wonderkop.

Expelled ANCYL leader Julius Malema is expected to speak to the miners at Wonderkop.

Malema would also welcome the rest of the miners to be released from prison today.

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