Gordhan: Strikes could hit economy hard

2012-09-14 14:21

Johannesburg - Labour unrest in the mining industry was extremely damaging to the economy, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan said on Friday.

"It undermines confidence in the South African economy, and if we undermine confidence, we undermine investment," he told reporters at a press conference in Pretoria.

Meanwhile Intelligence Minister Siyabonga Cwele said no more illegal gatherings or incitement to violence would be tolerated.

"No more incitement to violence would be tolerated," Cwele said.

The ministers of police, justice, finance and intelligence were briefing the media on ongoing unprotected mining strikes across the country over the past few weeks.

Forty-five people have died in incidents related to an illegal strike at Lonmin mine in Rustenburg. Thirty-four of them were shot dead by police a month ago.

Asked how authorities would control crowds without shooting, Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa only said: "We will do everything to ensure that peace will prevail."

Asked if expelled ANC Youth League president Julius Malema was being accused of incitement to violence, the ministers said, "this statement of government is not directed to any specific individuals".

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  • Sprinkler47 - 2012-09-14 14:29

    Yet more stating of the obvious. Disappointing from Gordhan.

      chris.nel.35 - 2012-09-14 14:38

      Ya he is definately telling the wrong people. He must go to Lonmin and tell those idiots. This feud between malema and zoomer is hurting the the whole country but they do not care, to them it's a power struggle and they don't care if ALL the citizens suffer. I see BIG trouble coming.

      claudia.meads - 2012-09-14 14:41

      Mmmmm.., running a country is a bit more difficult than a country into the ground, while you are an underground terrorist movement...

      rbphiri - 2012-09-14 14:51

      Gordhan where were you all this time, It's obvious that the economy is losing millions, what did you think would happen??? Perhaps the strikes finding tangeable solutions to solve climate change, HIV/Aids and other atrocities facing humanity? I bet other high ranking officials are probably scratching their heads right now and saying....hmmmm this civil unrest may screw our economy???

      Willie - 2012-09-14 15:18

      From Jay Naidoo to Sam Shilowa to Vavi " Labour unrest... industry was extremely damaging to the economy" same song fix the problem and stop singing this song

      michael.lanigan.37 - 2012-09-14 19:56

      Ironically, it is ANC members (former) of the same ilk that are causing the trouble and protesting against other ANC members? It seems the animals really are running the show... (this is not intended in a racist way. Just the calibre of people we have running this country)

  • ianon.ym - 2012-09-14 14:29

    Welcome to the efficiency of the ANC.

  • ck1ab - 2012-09-14 14:30

    hope it goes beyond lip-service when they say that "it won't be tolerated"

      christopher.shining - 2012-09-14 15:03


  • julius.hond - 2012-09-14 14:35

    there is a civil war looming.... be ready comrades

  • mofstok - 2012-09-14 14:37

    You don't say?

  • lynette.venter.12 - 2012-09-14 14:38

    Again - talk talk talk talk talk talk - that's all they got!

      malcolm.james.macleod - 2012-09-14 14:41

      The sad thing is it has taken them this long just to state the obvious...

  • shirley.steenkamp - 2012-09-14 14:40

    Anybody with half a brain knows it is damaging to the economy! What you have ALL failed to explain is why it was allowed to continue this long without serious attempts to put the "elements" provoking this behaviour out of action?????

  • fidel.mgoqi - 2012-09-14 14:40

    And it should! What has this economy done for these thousands of miners who other than ensuring that they and their children will remain exploited.

      malcolm.james.macleod - 2012-09-14 14:48

      I think you are confusing the words 'employed' and 'exploited' try switch them around and then maybe it will make sense to you.

      shirley.steenkamp - 2012-09-14 15:15

      Fidel:Unless you live outside South Africa,this will affect you and your family!!!I guess you were educated in the Eastern Cape-sorry.

      hope.floats.9212 - 2012-09-14 15:45

      Has anyone commenting here ever been down a mine. I am from a mining town. These miners do horrible and dangerous jobs and spend 12 hours + underground a day. None of you would last more than an hour underground. Yes they are being exploited and their children not properly educated which means they too will be exploited. And for the benefit of all the racists - I am white. This is not a race issue, just facts

      naude.andrea - 2012-09-14 16:22

      What an idiotic thing to say. I think you live in a warped world. Nobody forced ANY person to apply for work at Lonmin. And why don't they resign? Easy thin to do if you don't like the job.

  • Sprinkler47 - 2012-09-14 14:47

    Also disappointing from News24. Is this statement really worth reporting as a headline?

  • flyswat - 2012-09-14 14:52

    For R5,500 p/m, I'm greatly surprised we don't have hoardes of people applying!

      shirley.steenkamp - 2012-09-14 15:20

      Unfortunately they all want to fly high like Malema!

  • winifred.watson.9 - 2012-09-14 14:54

    Trying to educate the educated again. They really think we are a bunch of nincompoops. Tell us something we dont know.

  • daniewilken - 2012-09-14 14:55

    Gordham you are also part of the goverment. Why wake up after the damage has been done. You give money to Zim why not give the miners better sallaries. As long as your bank ballance and safety are guaranteed you don't care. I thought that you are hiding in the closet or was he gambling in Vegas. There is a time to sleep and a time to be awake. Zuma knows that this thing will get out of hand,maybe that is what he wants. Maybe zuma and Malema has discussed this plan to bring radical change to the country. zuma is the boss but he has no voice. Is he protecting someone. mr gordahm they are doing all of this on the expense of the country. gordahm we are in 2012 and you should know of better. do not complain so late wake up and see the light. or are you still busy eating your expesive luxury prepared breakfast.

  • kgolane.thulare - 2012-09-14 15:15

    Gordan tell the people the truth !!!....South African mines having been surviving on cheap labour for the miners have had enough.

  • kathy.fivefour - 2012-09-14 15:18


  • hester.ferrezuelo - 2012-09-14 15:19

    I keep wondering. What if it was a white man who invited the Defence Force and told them to act against the government? Is it not treason?? Why is Malema still walking around? He should have been arrested there and then. Wonder why government is so scared of him? What has he got on them??

  • osmaseko - 2012-09-14 15:22

    Gordhan tell us something we don't know..come with soulutions not what we know...Mthetwa is a palooka he doesn't have a strategy for this as he didn't have one for the gangs in the Cape Flats...Cwele is more use less than the two..he couldn't deal with his spouse, how can he deal with thousands of miners? This Government is a joke

  • eben.vanderrmerwe - 2012-09-14 15:23

    Tha ANC including Zuma has made alot of statements this week, but in reallity has achieved nothing whatsoever by this. It's almost like continiously warning a delinquent child but never actualy punishing the behaviour!!. It is a Banana Republic...... including Julius.

  • phreewil - 2012-09-14 15:34

    We are told the workers are demanding that their wage be raised to R12,500 per month (about $1,500) but the workers claim their salary is already at this level. They say they are sub-contracted by a company owned by billionaire South African oligarch Cyril Ramaphosa. He only pays them R5,400 or less and pockets the rest paid out by Lonmin. If this is so then agreeing to the workers’ demands would cost Lonmin nothing and the whole dispute is between the workers and Cyril Ramaphosa. Instead of saying this however, Lonmin has placed itself between the two and taken responsibility for negotiating a pay rise which no one has asked for. Doing this, Lonmin is placing Cyril Ramaphosa’s private interests above those of its common stockholders and is neglecting its fiduciary duties. It is also leaving itself open to litigation. Cyril Ramaphosa in fact owns 9% of Lonmin but was paid out $304m in cash by the company in 2010 in a deal backed ultimately by Xstrata. By comparison common shareholders have received only $60m in dividends in the last two years and have incurred over $2.5bn of paper losses. What the workers are requesting is that Ramaphosa share with them about $18m which he is taking from their wages.

      Sprinkler47 - 2012-09-14 16:34

      @phreewil. You are clearly gullible. I also read this article. It is loaded with inaccuracies, and is frankly a load of rubbish. Maybe you should read some of the comments to the article?

  • larry.piggott1 - 2012-09-14 15:38

    No Kidding Pravan? Tell us something that we dont already know? or is the statement made for your Doff ANC mates?

  • Lucky Prince Masoeu - 2012-09-14 15:39

    I am puzzled by the not so intelligent statement by the minister of intelligence. He's saying they wont tolerate illegal gatherings, meanwhile all the strikes taking place around the country are all illegal. Does that mean he's gonna stop the all the miners from striking? or Maybe he's just scared to say that they wont tolerate gatherings where Malema is involved?

      Thobile Lugwadu - 2012-09-14 15:47

      His tail is firmly between his legs.hahahaha i can smell mangaung will be worse than polokwane.

  • michael.barns.1 - 2012-09-14 15:44

    No Mr. Gordhan you rocket scientist, I think giving Zimbabwe and the rest of Africa BILLIONS of rands is damaging to our economy! First fix our problems before you try and fix other peoples!

  • harry.dewet.5 - 2012-09-14 16:31

    Please read the following: and rather tell us why your agent, i.e. Malema, is trying to blame the white people as the one's who own the mines, and who enslave and underpay the poor miners? You, the ANC is directly responsible for all the unrest and damage to our economy. Apart from instigating hatred against whites, you now seem to be desperate in trying to enrich and empower yourselves even more? When will you be satisfied and stop your illegal AA & BEE, i.e. "reversed Apartheid", and war against white farmers? Is this "revolution" now your evil secret plan to implement your so-called "second phase" of drastic additional AA, BEE, nationalization and land grabs?

  • brent.bartlett.98 - 2012-09-14 17:01

    While Gordhan goes home to his roast beef, potatoes, greens and pudding let me see how many of you who comment here can affrod to feed your families on R 4200 per month. While the violence element needs to be dealt with the exploitation of mineworkers needs to come to an end. The rich cannot keep getting richer and the poor poorer in South Africa. It's time the structure of the economy is changed to meet the demands of a new global financial reality. It's really that simple. But Government is full of incompetent fools, Gordhan included, who just don't know how to go about it.

      jacques.shepperson - 2012-09-14 17:18

      R4200 is enough if your currency have buying power!

  • jacques.shepperson - 2012-09-14 17:15

    ...and next year budget time the non strikers will be taxed more and the strikers less... where else will the short fall in taxes be made up?

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