Police deny ‘malicious’ Amcu claims

2014-03-05 08:27

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North West police have denied claims by Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) president Joseph Mathunjwa that a peace forum to prevent labour-related violence in the province was gunning for the union’s members.

“It is untrue and malicious that the so-called peace forums in Rustenburg ... are aimed at discrediting Amcu,” Brigadier Thulani Ngubane said yesterday.

Beeld reported on Monday that Mathunjwa, president of Amcu, said the peace forums were targeting union members.

Mathunjwa reportedly said Amcu had not been invited to participate in the forums. He also claimed court representatives served on the forums.

“It’s abuse of state resources,” he was quoted as saying.

Ngubane said the union was discrediting itself by never wanting to form part of any peace forum like the Mine Crime Combating Forum.

“At no point will the police sit back when members of any union, including those of Amcu, involve themselves in any criminal activities, especially when they want to intimidate, bully and attack non-striking workers who are going to work,” he said.

“No one attacks nor intimidates striking mine workers who are members of Amcu,” he said.

Ngubane said police were the custodians of the law and would arrest perpetrators of crime regardless of the union T-shirt they were wearing.

“We are an impartial organisation delivering equal services to all South Africans,” he said.

The Mine Crime Combating Forum was established in August 2013 to resolve problems and maintain stability in the mining industry.

Ngubane said Amcu was invited to participate in the forum when it was launched.

“Even now, the forum is desperate to get Amcu involved and commit to peace,” he said.

“The Mine Crime Combating Forum is one platform that has assisted in curbing some of the murders and the crimes that were rife before it was launched in the Platinum Belt,” he said.

Ngubane denied that the forum was a structure of Amcu’s rivals, the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM).

“All role players, including the NUM and representatives from the mining houses, are reporting various crimes that have been occurring at the mines and they are requesting the police to act against these perpetrators,” he said.

“The representatives from the local courts and the National Prosecuting Authority are not part of the forum structure.”

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