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Amcu threatens to halt SA's economy

Amcu wants its members from around the country to take part in a mass march to the Union Buildings.

Amcu's Joseph Mathunjwa. Picture: Taurai Maduna/EWN.

MARIKANA - Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) leader Joseph Mathunjwa has threatened to bring the country's economy to a standstill with a mass march over continued union rivalry.

Mathunjwa addressed thousands of miners at a memorial service in Marikana on Thursday for slain Amcu regional chairperson Mawethu Stevens who was murdered over weekend.

He also called off the wildcat strike by miners who have been calling on Lonmin to recognise Amcu as the majority union at the mine.

Miners screamed and cheered when Mathunjwa stood up and danced before addressing the crowd at the service.

While Stevens' killers haven't yet been arrested, Mathunjwa blamed union rivalry for tensions which flared this week.

"We are sick and tired over this union bashing and killings taking place."

He said they wanted President Jacob Zuma to know how serious the issue was.

"We will bring the economy of this country to a standstill. We are going to exercise our power and dominance by marching to the Union Buildings."

Mathunjwa said he was still in talks with the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) about the union's majority recognition.

Meanwhile, Bishop Jo Seoka who played an integral part in wage negotiations for the miners last year, as well as Advocate Dali Mpofu who is representing them at the Commission of Inquiry, paid their respects for Stevens at the service.

A PLACE LIKE NO OTHER

Stevens was expected to testify at the Marikana Commission of Inquiry which is investigating the August shooting in which 34 miners were killed.

The regional chairperson was gunned down on Saturday at a local tavern and hours later the same gang allegedly shot and killed twin brothers Andile and Ayanda Shezi at their home after they refused to divulge Stevens' whereabouts.

In 2012, a NUM official was killed before he could testify at the inquiry.

In March, a sangoma who reportedly supplied the miners with muti during the strike was gunned down outside his home in the Eastern Cape.

Meanwhile, the value of the Rand has dropped since operations came to a halt and the platinum producer could experience major losses if the rivalry is not resolved.

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