Johannesburg, South Africa — MININGREVIEW.COM — 17 September 2008 – South Africa’s largest mineworkers’ union – the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) – has confirmed that 17 000 of its members will take part in a protest march later today at Rustenburg Platinum Mines’ Rustenburg Section – the biggest mine owned by leading international platinum producer Anglo Platinum.
NUM branch official Lizwi Kwezi emphasised to Reuters that the protest – which was over a social labour plan – would not affect mine output. It would kick off this afternoon after workers had ended their shift.
Kwezi confirmed that the workers would march on Anglo Platinum’s offices at Rustenburg mine, in the North West province. “This will be a peaceful march, and will not impact negatively on production or profits,” he assured.
Anglo Platinum spokesman Simon Tebele would not comment immediately on the intended protest.
Kwezi pointed out that the social labour plan required Anglo Platinum to fund development in areas from where it employed its labour.
So far, the company had spent more money on the immediate area around Rustenburg, from where it received the bulk of its workers, but had failed to spend much cash on developing projects in the more distant areas from where some its workers hailed.