ANYCL calls for end to mine blame game

2012-08-15 17:51

Johannesburg - Protesting workers at Lonmin's Marikana mine need to exercise restraint, the ANC Youth League said on Wednesday.

"The loss of even one worker is always one life too many, but the killing of 10 people is a tragedy of epic proportions," spokesperson Khusela Sangoni-Khawe said in a statement.

"During this time, the African National Congress Youth League echoes [the Congress of SA Trade Unions'] call for workers to exercise maximum discipline and restraint in the face of faceless and nameless provocation."

Violence erupted at the mine near Rustenburg on Friday after about 3 000 rock drill operators downed tools in an illegal strike and began protesting.

The protests are believed to be linked to rivalry between the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) and the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU) over recognition agreements at the mine.

Workers also wanted higher wages.

Sangoni-Khawe said that Lonmin, NUM and AMCU needed to take joint responsibility for the recent violence, as "this matter cannot be relegated to a blame session between the unions and the company".

"We call therefore for an immediate end to the hostilities between NUM and AMCU and for NUM to lead in true tradition of the Congress movement and initiate discussion with all stakeholders to resolve the current impasse."

She said the ANCYL wanted to remind both unions of the constitutionally enshrined right of workers to freedom of association.

"No union shall be allowed to use the lives of people [to] bolster their support..."

The 10 people killed since the protests began comprised of two police officers, two security guards, three protesters and three other men.

"The manner in which these murderous and heinous crimes were carried out is indicative of an organised and orchestrated campaign against workers," Sangoni-Khawe said.

The Youth League had not assumed that calls for democratisation of workplaces would need to be extended to "the revolutionary and progressive trade union movement".

Strong police presence

Earlier, trade union Solidarity expressed concern about the safety of non-striking workers at the mine.

General secretary Gideon du Plessis said the union was grateful to the police for sending reinforcements to the area.

"We believe that employees can work under the current circumstances, but we will continually monitor the situation together with Lonmin's management," he said.

"Although there is a strong police presence in the veld and residential areas near the mine, Solidarity is of the opinion that the shafts at the mines must be safeguarded to enable employees to go to work without fear."

If the union felt its members were not adequately protected, it would hold talks with mine management.

Police spokesperson Captain Dennis Adriao said protecting the mine shafts was not in the police's jurisdiction and referred questions about these security arrangements to the mine.

Lonmin declined to comment on the protection it was affording to non-striking workers.

Mineral Resources Minister Susan Shabangu expressed concern over the violent protests at the North West mine, her office said on Wednesday.

"The minister is gravely concerned, and is condemning the violence at Lonmin's Marikana mine, and will engage with the minister of police," her spokesperson Zingaphi Jakuja said.

Shabangu said those who committed crimes during the protest needed to be brought to book.

Chamber of Mines spokesperson Jabu Maphalala said the employers' organisation would not comment on the unrest as it did not have enough information.

  • pat.aldrich.96 - 2012-08-15 18:08

    Fire the lot and let the unions go. They start everything and then blame the employers. Reduce their power. At the end they dont pay the people

      charlesdumbwin.dumbwin - 2012-08-15 18:11

      Okay, I've heard of communism, but what is this you're proposing? Talk about taking it to the next level!

  • toddler.ras - 2012-08-15 18:10

    what on earth is ANYCL? please fix the mistake then i'll read

  • wendetutubalang.wende - 2012-08-15 18:11

    I make a humbly urgent appeal that the government must arrest all those people in strike because, that strike has changed its form into murderous environment. There can't be lawlessness in this country.

      Robert - 2012-08-15 18:25

      There cant be...but there IS ! Day in and day out. This is just yet another " episode " in the long running " Days of our Lives. "

      Leviy Moneymaker - 2012-08-15 20:35


  • christelle.james.7 - 2012-08-15 18:11

    Let us turn where the wind blows. When it suits us, no violence please. When it is for our own agenda, we will decide and let you know.. Khusela Sangoni-Khawe, will you please arrange a meeting with the DA in Cape Town and discuss your statement with them?

  • jan.vanriebeeck.58 - 2012-08-15 18:15

    A sentiment held by most Patriots to this country,Stop the violence. These workers require a better wage due to the dangers engaged in the Mining Fraternity. A safer working Environment is non-negotiable. These Mining houses produce enough Profits to fulfill this criteria. How is it that in the 1960's Mineral resources accounted for 25% of the GDP however it is currently 6% of the GDP nevertheless production and price has increased a minimum of 700%. A major percentage of wealth gained via RSA Mineral resources are not even being traded in this country. This is a ridiculous situation. We are being screwed on a 24/7 basis by this Fraternity of ''Old boeties"" Mining Houses.

      graham.dutoit.12 - 2012-08-15 18:44

      Price increased 700%. What about costs?

      ruanpretorius1980 - 2012-08-15 18:54

      And don't forget the production bonusses these miners are paid each month for meeting and exceeding targets. These bonusses can easily total twice their monthly salary

  • kim.buren - 2012-08-15 18:20

    YAP YAP YAP YAP YAP YAP, put a sock in it will you.

      Robert - 2012-08-15 19:00

      Thats YIP YIP YIP Kim. After all it is the " youth " league !

  • patsy.smith.125 - 2012-08-15 18:38

    ANCYL Be careful of what you start - it's not always easy to stop it once it gets going

  • kevin.moxham.3 - 2012-08-15 18:43

    last time i saw the law book - carrying of weapons in public is an offence - using them to kill is also criminal - why do the police need to negoitate with criminals..?

      Robert - 2012-08-15 19:01

      Trick question ?

  • Stewart Croucamp - 2012-08-15 19:01

    The mindless ANCYL with their stupid ideas again.

  • emilyjane.elson - 2012-08-15 20:21

    "The manner in which these murderous and heinous crimes were carried out is indicative of an organised and orchestrated campaign against workers," Sangoni-Khawe said. Wtf?? They're the ones doing the killing and not one has been arrested for the murders! Those people that died, died in vain..

  • krish.reddy.104 - 2012-08-17 11:24

    I smell a RAT here.

  • krish.reddy.104 - 2012-08-18 08:36

    Consider the following...... A few weeks ago Malema and his cohorts entered the mine . Suddenly some of the miners were singing Malema's praises. Where has this figure of 12500-00 a month come from ?????????? Who manufactures these placards ????????? Wives of miners demonstrate demandiong a salary of 12500-00 Are they really the wives of miners or were they hired ????? Whose idea is this to bring on the wives of miners ? Are the Media involved in aiding add abetting the pepetrators????? Hoping all will be revealed at the enquiry.

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