Mpumalanga protests halt mine production

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Production has been affected in three mines owned by the Barberton-Mines, in Mpumalanga, following violent protests in the area.

Residents are accusing Barberton-Mines of overlooking them for employment but mine management says majority of the employees are from neighbouring communities.

The company says it has now lost millions due to the protest.

Protestors have set alight several trucks and a vehicle during the protest.

Manager for Finance and Administration at Barberton-Mines, Martin Pieters, says such protests action are having negative impact on them.

“Up until now the mine has suffered in excess of R10 million worth of losses. Our production has been hindered in one of our operations completely both night shift and day shift for about four days and on the other two operations we have had limited activity because the roads are closed at R 38 main road. Many of the buses that are transporting other people had to make alternative arrangements to go around via Nelspruit. As a  result people then get to work like three hours later than they normally would. At the present moment this situation is threatening the survival of the mine. So as the senior management team we are talking about survival, so we already in a survival situation. If it doesn’t stop within the next day we don’t know what can happen.”

National Union of Mine workers  (NUM) claim that the protests are having negative impact on workers.

“The no work no pay rule will be applied to us as the workers. But we are pleading with the management to discuss with the community and resolve the issues as soon as possible,” says NUM representative, Bandile Zimba.

Community leaders refused to talk to the media citing that the matter has been taken to court by the mine management.

Police continue to monitor the situation in the area.


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