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Lonmin operations grind to a halt

It appears striking Lonmin miners might return to work on Wednesday following a wildcat strike.

Lonmin miners take part in an illegal strike on 14 May 2013. Picture: Lesego Ngobeni/EWN

MARIKANA - Operations at Lonmin's Marikana mine in the North West came to a complete standstill on Tuesday after workers took part in an unprotected strike.

It appears that the murder of an official from the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) might have sparked the work stoppage.

But Amcu distanced itself from the illegal protest.

Miners wanted those responsible for Amcu member Mawethu Stevens' death to be arrested.

Workers also demanded that National Union of Mineworkers (Num) offices be shut down.

Miners also called on management to recognise Amcu as the majority union.

Earlier, miners gathered at the infamous koppie and threatened the media.

Workers also gathered at the Wonderkop Stadium for a mass meeting.

They were expected to receive feedback from their representatives, apparently the same leaders who led the strike in 2012.

Amcu leader Joseph Mathunjwa would not go into details about the workers' demands, but he insisted he did not call on his members to down tools.

Meanwhile, there are renewed fears of unrest in the platinum sector following Tuesday's strike, with union rivalry taking centre stage.

At least 44 people were killed during violent clashes at the mine in August 2012.

Both the Num and Amcu distanced themselves from the strike, implying that workers once again took matters into their own hands.

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