March 1, 2012Produced byLoven Lusenga
Despite the promulgation of the Mine Health and Safety Act in 1996, South African mines still have high rates of occupational health diseases such as silicosis. Despite measures by some in the industry and the government to ensure that dust levels are decreased; more cases continue to be reported.
Currently, the known number of cases is 1 500, but many more leave the industry without having being diagnosed and only start developing the symptoms years later. As a result of their exposure to silicosis, they become vulnerable to diseases such as Tuberculosis.Special Assignment brings you the story of two former mineworkers in Welkom, who are suffering from this disease.
Sello Masheane and Ramokase Mabea worked in the mines for 34 and 22 years respectively. Both were diagnosed with silicosis while working underground but believe that they have not been adequately compensated for contracting the disease in the mines. They are pursuing a legal claim against their former employers.
How can mine companies be held responsible?
For more information:Special Assignment office: (011) 714-6757/8Acting Executive Producer: Busisiwe Ntuli – 083 346 7291Co-ordinator: Menatalie Van Rooyen – 083 241 7670