South Africa: Chairpersons Shocked by Deaths of Mine Workers at Phalaborwa Mining Company

The Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee on Mineral Resources, Mr Sahlulele Luzipo, and the Chairperson of the Select Committee on Land and Mineral Resources, Mr Olifile Sefako, have learned with shock about the deaths of six mine workers at Phalaborwa Mining Company in Limpopo. On behalf of their committees, Mr Luzipo and Mr Sefako extend heartfelt condolences to the families and colleagues of the deceased workers.

The issue of mine health and safety has long reached a crisis proportions and requires desperate intervention. The Department of Mineral Resources must urgently draft legislation that will hold mine bosses and managers accountable for any life lost on duty,rdquo; said Mr Luzipo.

Mr Luzipo believes that it is highly abnormal that 18 lives have been lost in just three mine accidents in three months. It is in this context that the Portfolio Committee on Mineral Resources has written a letter to Minister Gwede Mantashe, to seek clarity on the status of the Mine Health and Safety Amendment Bill, as it has become an urgent piece of legislation. The committee also wants to hear what measures the department is implementing in the interim.

The committee will also hear by no later than 19 July 2018 via written submissions from organised labour on how mine health and safety can be improved.

The two Chairpersons believe that if what has been reported in the media about the cause of death at this mine is true, then there has been gross negligence by those in charge and they should be fired immediately. Mr Luzipo will visit the mine, as a matter of urgency.

Source: Republic of South Africa