Strike or work, we still suffer

Labour Q&A with Terry Bell

Fin24 users, striking mineworkers, say they'd rather strike and suffer than suffer while working.

Samson Maphelela writes: I'd rather suffer than suffer while working, particularly underground... our children deserve better and they are depending on their parents...

Bobo Lekhelebane shares this view, saying "these people don't feel what we feel underground. We need that R12 500."

Terry Bell responds:

I understand how you feel Samson. Like so many striking miners you see this as a make or break situation. And this strike has finally brought to wider attention problems that have long been with us, a legacy of more than a century of the migrant labour system.  

Let us hope that an holistic approach will now be adopted to ensure your children - and all children - receive a decent life.

Bobo, if by these people you mean the mining company directors, you are probably right. Few people - and I include myself, although I have seen rock drilling in stopes at first hand - can have much idea about what it must be like to labour in those conditions day after day.

The R12 500 has become something of a flag of honour since the demand was first raised at Marikana in 2012 and, hopefully, it will eventually be achieved.

- Fin24

* Terry Bell is an independent political, economic and labour analyst. Views expressed are his own. Follow him on twitter @telbelsa.

Disclaimer: All articles and letters published on MyFin24 have been independently written by members of the Fin24 community. The views of users published on Fin24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent those of Fin24.

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For 14 free days, you can have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today. Thereafter you will be billed R75 per month. You can cancel anytime and if you cancel within 14 days you won't be billed. 
Subscribe to News24
Rand - Dollar
Rand - Pound
Rand - Euro
Rand - Aus dollar
Rand - Yen
Brent Crude
Top 40
All Share
Resource 10
Industrial 25
Financial 15
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes Iress logo
Company Snapshot
Editorial feedback and complaints

Contact the public editor with feedback for our journalists, complaints, queries or suggestions about articles on News24.

Government tenders

Find public sector tender opportunities in South Africa here.

Government tenders
This portal provides access to information on all tenders made by all public sector organisations in all spheres of government.
Browse tenders