Lonmin concerned about worker safety

2013-05-15 07:52
Gallery  |  click on thumbnail to view larger image

New unrest at Marikana

Thousands of mine workers downed tools today at Lonmin mine after a union leader was shot dead in the restive platinum belt at the weekend. See the pictures.

Johannesburg - The safety of people in Marikana is a priority, Lonmin platinum mine said on Tuesday night.

"The physical safety of everyone at Marikana remains our overriding priority and must take precedence over all other matters," the company's vice-president of mining, Mark Munroe said in a statement issued from its London offices.

"Embarking on unlawful and unprotected work stoppages puts lives and livelihoods at risk while families also suffer due to the loss of earnings."

Wildcat strike

The company said it was fully committed to achieving a fair and peaceful resolution of the dispute.

He urged all striking employees to return to work, and urged their representatives to continue meeting with management.

"We believe that through respectful dialogue between unions and management we will be able to resolve the issues that have been raised and maintain the excellent momentum that together we have achieved in the last six months."

Lonmin said it had met with unions earlier on Tuesday.

"The leadership of each union has assured Lonmin that they did not call for the work stoppage and therefore do not support it," the company said.

Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) members went on wildcat strike on Tuesday, demanding that the National Union of Mineworkers' offices be shut down. The union said NUM had lost its status as a majority union.

They marched earlier in the day through the dusty streets of Nkaneng from Wonderkop, the hill where 34 striking miners were shot dead by police on 16 August last year.


Lonmin confirmed operations were suspended in the morning because of the strike. NUM regional co-ordinator Mxhasi Sithethi said the situation at the mine was tense.

"People are singing outside our office, demanding the closure of the NUM office."

The strikers marched to a local stadium where they were waving sticks in the direction where police vehicles were parked.

A high number of police officers were deployed to monitor the situation.

Three people, including Amcu regional organiser Mawethu Steven, were gunned down in Marikana at the weekend.

Steven was shot dead at a tavern in Photsaneng on Saturday.

Two brothers, Andile and Ayanda Menzi, were shot dead also in Nkaneng on Saturday.

Munroe said it did not permit or condone the carrying of firearms on company property.

"Anyone found guilty of this violation of company policy will be reported to the police and face disciplinary action," he said.

"We have investigated every allegation of firearms being in union offices and none of our searches have uncovered any weapons. Nevertheless, we have agreed to increase the number of random searches of offices and individuals."

- Are you there? Send us your eyewitness accounts and photos.

Read more on:    lonmin  |  amcu  |  num  |  mahikeng  |  strikes  |  marikana inquiry  |  mining

Join the conversation!

24.com 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.

24.com 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

Competition regulation for a growing and inclusive economy

ADVERTORIAL: The Competition Commission of South Africa is conducting advocacy work in the South African automotive aftermarket industry and has gazetted a Draft Code of Conduct for public comment.

Traffic Alerts
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 24.com 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.