Amplats miners: Wage talks will end violence

Amplats miners want management to reopen wage negotiations to end the violence.

Amplats miners.

JOHANNESBURG - Striking miners in Rustenburg on Thursday said they wanted management to reopen wage negotiations to end the violence.

Two people were killed, cars and taxis were set alight and 40 people were arrested for public violence in the Nkaneng informal settlement before police seized control of the situation.

Police will be on high alert on Friday after one man was set alight and another was shot during the unrest.

Strike leader Gaddafi Mdoda said sacked Amplats workers condemned the violence.

He called on management to return to the negotiating table.

Mdoda said strike committee members would meet in Nkaneng on Friday, before gathering in Marikana.

Amplats fired 12,000 workers last week after they failed to attend disciplinary hearings related to their illegal strike action.

Workers will not appeal the dismissal, but said they still considered themselves to be employed by the mine.

They embarked on strike action last month, in demand for a monthly salary of R16,000.

Meanwhile, a group of mineworkers also gathered at Anglo American Platinum's Bathopele Mine in an attempt to get working colleagues to join their strike before police dispersed them.

'HIGH DEBT FUELLING DEMANDS'

Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies said high-levels of debt is fuelling miners demands for higher salaries.

Davies gave feedback on investigations into dodgy micro-lenders, operating in mining communities, on Thursday.

He said he has given the National Credit Regulator carte blanche to do everything it can to crackdown on unscrupulous micro-lenders who are targeting poor mining communities.

"Much of that erode deeply into the incomes of those communities, which also fuel the high demands for salary increases."

The regulator said that in the Marikana area alone, 13 credit providers were investigated.

Ten were found to be breaking the law.

The regulator's Nomsa Motshegare said, "A number of credits providers have been arrested."