Two mineworkers have died in last 24 hours.
“Even though the details are still coming in‚ initial reports have it that one mineworker perished at Dishaba Mine close to Thabazimbi in Limpopo‚ while the other one passed away earlier today [Thursday] at Kopanang Mine on the West Rand. The names of the fallen workers are not yet known‚” the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) said on Thursday evening.
“Amcu is concerned that both these incidents relate to falls of ground and both are repeatable accidents.”
The trade union said it wanted the department of mineral resources to hold mines accountable when miners die on duty. They also want the Mine Health and Safety Act to be amended to increase regulation.
“These calls included amendments to Section 23‚ which allows workers to refuse entering dangerous working areas as well as criminal liability to mining bosses found to be guilty of contravening regulations. It is simply ludicrous that the bosses still get exorbitant bonuses while our workers die.”
In July‚ the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) also asked for mining bosses to be held accountable for mineworkers’ deaths.
“We reinforce calls made by our federation Saftu [South African Federation of Trade Unions] for the Mine Health and Safety Act to be amended to allow for the prosecution of mine bosses if workers are killed underground‚” Numsa spokesperson Phakamile Hlubi-Majola said at the time.
“They must be held personally liable for lives lost underground. Perhaps if this is done‚ we will begin to see an end to fatalities underground.”