Deadline for Harmony Gold miners

Harmony Gold miners have been instructed to report for work or be fired.

FILE PICTURE: Harmony Gold miners. Picture: Werner Beukes/SAPA

JOHANNESBURG - Miners at Harmony Gold's Kusasalethu mine near Carletonville on Gauteng's West Rand were on Wednesday instructed to report to work on Thursday at 6am or face immediate dismissal.

Earlier this week, the company issued an ultimatum to nearly 5,500 thousand miners who went on an illegal strike in September, demanding higher wages.

This follows another ultimatum issued to miners at Gold Fields and AngloGold Ashanti mines.

Harmony Gold spokesperson Marian van der Walt said they were cautiously optimistic that the ultimatum would bring an end to the illegal strike today.

"We really do hope that they can now come to some sort of conclusion and that we can get Kusasalethu up and running again."

Meanwhile, Gold Fields spokesperson Sven Lunche said a majority of the 8,500 who embarked on strike action had appealed their dismissal.

He said mine management hoped miners could remain non-violent during the appeal process.

At the same time, Anglogold Ashanti said it had started the dismissal process of 12,000 workers at its West Wits mine - but said it was committed to reaching a settlement before the process was completed.