Gold One Mine sit-in now a hostage situation: Mantashe

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Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy Gwede Mantashe says the sit-in at Gold One Mine in Springs, east of Johannesburg is now a hostage situation.

The Minister met with the mine management, labour unions and the police earlier today.

Over 400 mineworkers at the mine have not resurfaced following an underground sit-in. He says they have handed the situation over to the police.

“We came here to deal with an issue of a sit-in that has changed from a sit-in to a hostage drama today, because people are held underground by force and a few people came out assaulted badly. A message in writing has been sent from underground, which is purporting to be from AMCU which put a number of demands if they are not answered within 2 hours they will kill a shift boss underground.”

Mantashe briefs the media on the Gold One situation:

Meanwhile, head of legal at Gold One, Ziyaad Hassam says for the majority of the people underground this is definitely a hostage situation.

Hassam adds, “We have had reports from underground of nine miners that have been assaulted, so the situation is very dire and we heading to day three with minimal food and water available.”

Hassam’s full interview below: