Today's Labour News

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Sibanye StillwaterBloomberg reports that according to Sibanye Gold, workers failing to follow rules and procedures were largely to blame for a spike in fatal accidents at its SA operations, where 19 people have died since January.  

The precious metals producer accounts for more than a third of the deaths in SA mines this year and faces growing criticism from unions and government.  In the latest incident, four workers died and one was still missing on Tuesday at its Kloof operation.  Sibanye spokesperson James Wellsted said about the increase in fatal accidents:  “It is inexplicable to us…  We think a lot of it is behavioral and due to people taking risks and not following safety procedures.”  Sibanye said it was asking unions and government for help to get workers to comply with procedures and it arranged a ‘safety summit’ last month to discuss the issues.  The workers who died at Kloof this week had strayed into an abandoned area with no ventilation and it was unclear what they were doing there, Wellsted indicated.  The area should have been barricaded, said National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) general secretary David Sipunzi.  Sibanye “must take responsibility” for the deaths and should be forced to shut down all its mines to allow for a full safety inspection, the union’s safety chairperson, Peter Bailey, said separately.

  • Read this report by Felix Njini in full at Moneyweb

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