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Harmony mineworkers stage sit-in

Dec 21 2012 08:32 I-Net Bridge

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Johannesburg - Harmony Gold Mining Company [JSE:HAR] says about 1 700 mineworkers‚ representing Thursday’s day shift at its Kusasalethu mine near Carletonville‚ remain underground and they are refusing to return to surface. 

Demands from the underground mineworkers‚ led by Amcu union representatives‚ include the withdrawal of the suspension of the 578 employees including contractors which were suspended on Wednesday December 19‚ the company said in a statement. 

Talks with the employees and Amcu representatives are ongoing in order to resolve the situation. 

"Safety and health is our first priority and we will do our utmost to ensure the mineworkers return to surface safely‚" said Tom Smith‚ chief operating officer of Harmony. 

On Thursday‚ the South African Press Association reported that five mineworkers were injured in a clash with security guards at Kusasalethu mine. 

Harmony said on Thursday it was closing its Kusasalethu mine a day earlier than planned for the festive season‚ following violent behaviour and damage to mine infrastructure on surface. 

Security at the mine and the SA Police Service were on the scene to control the crowd and to further ensure the safety of all the employees. 

The violence followed the suspension of 578 employees including some contractors as a result of the participation of these employees in an unprotected strike action on Saturday December 15‚ the company noted. 

"We have made it clear that no violence will be tolerated and to ensure the safety of our employees it has become imperative to close the shaft until the labour issues have been resolved‚" Smith said on Thursday.


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