Today's Labour News

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implatsheadgear smlMail & Guardian reports that with the recent spate of killings on the North West platinum belt mirroring the murders that happened before the Marikana massacre in August 2012, mining unions have raised red flags about the heightened tension.  

Now the Chamber of Mines has met the national security cluster in a bid to prevent more violence.  This year, five Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) members have been murdered at the Lonmin and Impala mines near Rustenburg.  Amcu blamed hired killers and speculated about whether rival unions, the government or state security could be involved.  But with an internal rebellion afoot, Amcu finds itself in a similar situation to the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) before the Marikana massacre.  While its members may have different reasons for their dissent, Amcu acknowledged the problem and dispatched national leaders to all branches on the platinum belt.  This year’s killings appear to be linked to the perks of being elected into the union.  So, a permanent Amcu branch official earns about R18,000 a month at Lonmin — double the wage of an underground worker.  Allegations of corruption against the Amcu leadership and branch officials on the platinum belt have also been blamed for the latest killings.  In the chaos, the NUM claims to be drawing members back to its ranks in Rustenburg, but this is unsubstantiated.

  • Read this report by Govan Whittles, which also deals with violence on gold mines campaign in the Free State and Gauteng, in full at Mail & Guardian


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