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Mining unions, govt. sign peace accord

Unions and government agreed on terms and conditions for peace in the mining industry.

Unions and government agreed on terms and conditions for peace in the mining industry.  Picture: AFP

JOHANNESBURG - Mining unions have welcomed the signing of a peace accord aimed at stopping violence in the sector.

The Mineral Resources Department, Chamber of Mines, National Union of Mineworkers (Num), Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) and Solidarity all agreed that the intimidation and destruction of property, which started during the Marikana protests last year, must come to an end.

Num General Secretary Frans Baleni said the peace agreement was a positive step, but action was needed.

"The participants must commit and lead with this commitment that they have made."

Solidarity spokesperson Leigh McMaster said the accord would bring cohesion to the industry.

"We firmly believe the framework will facilitate short-term labour stability in the sector and will serve as a basis in the long-term for the mining industry."

At least 34 people were gunned down during a confrontation with police at Lonmin's Marikana mine during the August strike.