Union shocked by miner's 'barbaric' murder

2012-02-07 21:01

Johannesburg - The body of a murdered female mineworker was found underground at Anglo Platinum's Khomanani mine on Monday, the company confirmed on Tuesday.

Amplats spokesperson Mary-Jane Molifi said it was the first incident of its kind to be reported in the company.

"It has shocked all of us," she said.

Molifi said the woman was a belt operator, but declined to release further details.

The National Union of Mineworkers (Num) said the woman was raped, but Molifi said sexual assault had not yet been established.

Both the police and the department of mineral resources are investigating, said Molifi.

Autopsy results are expected on Friday.

Molifi said Amplats had offered counselling to traumatised employees.

"We put the safety of our employees first," she said.

The group had instituted a buddy system, so that workers look out for the safety of their team members.

Molifi said the section where the body was found had been closed for the investigation, but the rest of the mine was operating normally.

Num said it was disgusted by the incident and disappointed that women workers faced being killed by their colleagues.

"We condemn the barbaric and neanderthal act that happened," said Frans Baleni, Num's general secretary, in a statement.

The union asked women to remain calm during the investigation.

It appealed to the department of mineral resources to "reject any innuendo that seeks to bar women from working underground".

Read more on:    num  |  frans baleni  |  mining

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