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Miners plan mass strike to Union Buildings

Miners are planning to rally all their colleagues for a mass demonstration in October.

Anglo miners demonstrate, demanding better wages. Picture: Govan Whittles/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Leaders for striking workers in Rustenburg called on miners across the country to join a mass demonstration to the Union Buildings in Pretoria in October.

Miners at several Rustenburg mines have been on strike for close to four weeks to demand a R12,500 basic wage increase.

Four of Anglo Platinum (Amplats) mines in the Rustenburg have been idle for more than two weeks due to a wildcat strike.

Strike leader Mametlwe Sebei said the workers plan to march to the Union Buildings on October 13.

"We are going to be rallying all other miners to help us demand a wage of R12,500 for all workers."

Sebei said the demonstration is aimed at putting pressure on the mining industry to pay its workers decent salaries and improve their living conditions.

He said the miners already received support from workers in the diamond sector and civil society organisations.

Meanwhile, Cosatu said it will also support strikes by mineworkers across the country, saying the issue of improved wages and living conditions have been ignored for too long.

On Saturday, the union federation's General Secretary Zwelinzima Vavi addressed hundreds of workers at Gold Fields KDC West mine.

Vavi pledged that Cosatu will fight for the miners' rights.

He said the workers demands for a minimum wage of R12,500 is a legitimate plea.

Vavi said it is shocking that workers live in inhumane condition even after apartheid.

"They are exposed to terrible conditions in the hostels."