Fin24

Business as usual at Harmony

2012-11-23 11:25

Johannesburg - Operations have not been affected by a fresh outbreak of violence at Harmony Gold [JSE:HAR] mine that killed two people, the company said on Friday.

Two workers were killed and one was wounded on Thursday afternoon in a turf battle between members of rival unions at the miner's Kusasalethu shaft near the mining town of Carletonville.

One was hacked to death and another was shot dead.

"It's actually very peaceful. Last night's shift went down, this morning's shift went down as well.

It's actually business as usual," company spokesperson Marian van der Walt told AFP.

The company said security has been stepped up at the mine to ensure the safety of its employees.

The latest flare-up of mining violence comes just a week after the end of the most devastating and costly bout of labour unrest in South Africa in nearly a century.

The strikes that left over 50 people dead, started in August at Lonmin [JSE:LON] mine in South Africa's northwest platinum belt, before spreading to other mines and other sectors engulfing over 140 000 workers and costing more than R10bn.

Workers at the mine's Kusasalethu shaft near Johannesburg, had returned to work late October following weeks of a violent illegal work stoppages over wages.

Harmony CEO Graham Briggs deplored "the tragic and senseless loss of life in what appears to be inter-union rivalry, not associated with the operations of the mine".

A smaller and upstart union, the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu), is seeking recognition at the mine where the traditional National Union of Mines (NUM) has held turf for decades.

Police have not made any arrests yet following Thursday's clashes.

Comments
  • gtshitshiba - 2012-11-24 21:54

    What happened there is said indeed. Wish the law enforcement department will deal with the matter harshly. Hope the govenment will realize that not all is well in the mines, we can call it union rivary or what the sad reality is that people r dying not because they r sick but murdered. Time has come for the unions to be taken to task for the behaviour of their members and companies like harmony to b talen to task for allowing lawlesness. How many times vandalization took place there without that management acting?

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