Deal could have saved lives - NUM

2013-01-24 14:34
(Felix Dlangamandla, Foto24)

(Felix Dlangamandla, Foto24)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Rustenburg - Lives could have been saved if a wage dispute at Lonmin's Marikana mine had been settled outside of national bargaining processes, the Farlam commission heard on Thursday.

This was the view of National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) health and safety national secretary Erick Gcilitshana, who was testifying at the commission's hearings in Rustenburg.

Evidence leader Geoff Budlender asked him if it was true that lives could have been saved by a pay settlement.

"I think so. I can't be confident in saying that," he said.

Earlier, he recalled his shock on hearing that a police shooting had left 34 workers dead.

"I got [the news of the shooting] from the radio. To me it was a shock and surprise," Gcilitshana said.

He was the first witness to be called by the NUM. He was the chief negotiator during the Lonmin mineworkers' strike at Marikana in August. He is also a Lonmin employee.

Budlender asked him what his response was to hearing the news.

"I don't recall very clearly. As I remember, we did phone the company to verify." He was asked if he took any action following the confirmation, to which he answered: "Not."

Gcilitshana will be cross-examined by Lonmin lawyer Schalk Burger.

The commission is probing the deaths of 44 people during an unprotected strike at the mine last year.

Thirty-four striking mineworkers were shot dead and 78 were wounded when police opened fire while trying to disperse a group gathered on a hill near the mine on August 16.

In the preceding week, 10 people, including two police officers and two security guards, were hacked to death.
Read more on:    lonmin  |  num  |  mahikeng  |  marikana inquiry  |  mining  |  mining unrest

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Prince George the green prince?

Prince Charles hopes his grandson's love of the outdoors will become a passion for the environment.



One man's $1 million vision for an eco Africa
China's air pollution at doomsday levels
Keep food fresher for longer
Hurricanes, earthquakes and floods – What climate change really means for us

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts

The pace may be slow today and you may struggle to get things off the ground level, but it is important to focus on the more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.