Johannesburg - World No. 3 gold producer AngloGold
Ashanti [JSE:ANG] said on Wednesday an illegal strike had spread through its
South African operations and the majority of its 35 000 workers in the country
were now on strike.
“Workers at AngloGold Ashanti’s South African operations
have embarked on an unprotected strike, preventing the commencement of the
night shift on September 25,” the company said in a statement.
It did not say what the current demands were. South Africa
accounted for about 32% of the group’s global output of just over a million
ounces of gold in the first half of 2012.
AngloGold’s Mponeng operation, the world’s deepest mine that
is extracting ore at a depth of 4kms, is among those affected by the latest
illegal strike to hit South Africa’s mining sector.
Most of AngloGold’s 35 000 employees have now joined the
wildcat action that began last week at its Kopanang mine, spokesperson Alan Fine
A wave of wildcat action is roiling South Africa’s mines,
including a six-week stoppage at platinum producer Lonmin [JSE:LON] in which 45
people were killed last month.
Gold Fields [JSE:GFI], the world’s fourth largest bullion
producer, said on Tuesday workers had reneged on a deal to end a two-week
strike at its KDC West operation in South Africa and miners at its Beatrix mine
had also downed tools.
Top platinum producer Anglo Platinum [JSE:AMS] also has
operations shut because of the labour strife.
Fuelled in part by glaring income disparities, illegal
strikes erupted in the platinum sector in the form of a bloody turf war between
the Num and the more militant Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union
The strikes have now spread to the gold sector but there is
no evidence yet of Amcu involvement in the unrest.
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