But the story behind their deaths goes back years – and the potential for further conflict is still very much palpable.
The Mokopane shopkeeper has laid at least 7 environmental and anti-corruption charges against the platinum mine and the state to halt the project.
Who is responsible for the backlash? A research paper unravels the nexus of land ownership, traditional authority and mining elite interests.
Limpopo locals are standing their ground in their fight to halt a new platinum mine that Platreef wants to establish on their land.
Noting a decline of members in Amcu, NUM's Frans Baleni says some workers are not happy with the wage agreement that ended the platinum strike.
The platinum miner seeks to up its production in expectation of a deficit on platinum supply from 2018 onward.
Mineral Resources Minister Ngoako Ramatlhodi held shares in a platinum firm while mediating in the recent mineworkers' strike.
The trade union says Amcu's latest counter proposal on behalf of mineworkers borders on negotiating in bad faith and "defeating the ends of justice".
EFF leader Julius Malema has told striking mineworkers to stand firm on their demand, calling for an inquiry into claims that R12 500 is unaffordable.
Amcu says it has accepted a new wage offer from platinum miners, but outstanding issues still need to be discussed with the employers.
Ratings agency Fitch has downgraded its South African outlook to negative, and analysts expect Standard & Poor's to downgrade too.
The short-term benefit is likely to be higher prices – and investors will start looking elsewhere.
ANC's Gwede Mantashe seems to have hardened his stance on the statements he made about foreigners' influence on the mining strike negotiations.
Amcu members have urged leader Joseph Mathunjwa to sign a wage deal with the platinum firms after they announced reaching "in principle undertakings".
An orderly restructuring of the platinum industry is essential after the longest strike in our history, writes Gilad Isaacs.
Ngoako Ramatlhodi's softer stance towards Amcu, in comparison to other government officials, could be the reason for his hasty exit from wage talks.
Mineral Resources Minister Ngoako Ramatlhodi says "pulling back" from the negotiations may "exercise the minds ... of the negotiators".
The mines minister says a state task team that intervened in Amcu's wage negotiations has "done enough work" for the parties to continue.
Wage talks between Amcu and platinum producers were deadlocked, which has prompted Mining Minister Ngoako Ramatlhodi to abandon his mediation role.