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ANC policies have failed workers - Numsa

Numsa says the ANC and its partners need to transform the economy in light of the mining crisis.

Numsa general secretary Irvin Jim. Picture: Werner Beukes/SAPA

JOHANNESBURG - The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) on Thursday blamed mine bosses in the Rustenburg platinum belt for the ongoing crisis in South Africa's mining sector.

Numsa Secretary General Irvin Jim said mining companies should rehire the thousands of workers that were dismissed since the industrial action began in September.

He said the ANC and its alliance partners, Cosatu and the South African Communist Party, need to transform the economy in light of the crisis in the mining sector.

"We need to deal with issues of ownership and control, and economic redistribution."

Jim said the ongoing strikes, which resulted in several deaths, proved that ANC's policies have failed.

"What happened in Marikana is a reflective of the failure of the trajectory we adopted."

Jim was referring to the Marikana shooting, where police opened fire on protesting Lonmin workers, killing 34 miners and injuring 78 others.

The incident took place on August 16.

Numsa said it agreed to support President Jacob Zuma's campaign for a re-election in Mangaung, but the union wants workers to be represented at the conference.

The union also accused National Treasury of going to war with public sector workers.

Jim said Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan tried to blame the public sector wage bill for recent downgrades by various rating agencies.

"This is an attack on the public sector working class [which is] designed to single them out as being responsible for government's fiscal problems. For public service employees to be effective, not only should salaries be accelerated, but there is also a need to ensure that the many vacant posts are filled."