Implats strike: NW premier to intervene

Pretoria – North West Premier Thandi Modise was on Tuesday expected to be part of the delegation that was set to meet with striking Impala Platinum mineworkers.

The “intervention team” planned to address the striking workers at the Freedom Park Stadium outside Rustenburg on Tuesday morning.

The North West Provincial Government said while it had welcomed the agreement for the unconditional re-employment of about 17 000 striking mineworkers as a progressive development, normality has not returned to the volatile situation as it had hoped.

The 17 000 workers were dismissed following an illegal strike at Impala Platinum, the world’s second-largest platinum producer.

The strike saw a number of shops in the area – most of which belonged to Somali nationals – looted and burned down when the workers took to the streets over a pay dispute with mine authorities.

During the protests, two mineworkers were killed and several others injured. There has also been damage to property.

The strike, which has lasted over a month, has reportedly cost the mine more than R2 billion.

The settlement agreement was recently reached after a meeting between National Union of Mineworkers and Impala Platinum, facilitated by Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) General Secretary, Zwelinzima Vavi. – BuaNews