Strikers intimidate Implats workers

Some striking workers at Impala Platinum in the North West intimidated workers reporting for duty and hurled stones at passing cars on Wednesday, news from the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) reported.

Nine people had been admitted to hospital after they were assaulted for trying to go back to work at the mine outside Rustenburg, the broadcaster said.

Clashes with mine security started when angry workers prevented mine buses from ferrying their colleagues.

The workers accuse the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) and mine management of refusing to meet their interim committee members to resolve the ongoing impasse.

They have vowed to continue with their strike indefinitely, the SABC said.

When asked to comment, NUM spokesperson Lesiba Seshoka could not confirm the incident, saying only he had heard about it.

“There’s always been intimidation around the mine and we have asked law enforcement agencies to intervene. We have also requested the mine to provide adequate security,” said Seshoka.

NUM and Implats, the world’s second-largest producer of platinum, reconciled last Friday, weeks after an unprotected strike saw more than 17 000 workers dismissed.

NUM and Impala agreed to work together to ensure all workers returned to work and that dismissed workers would be re-employed. — Sapa

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