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DA to fight job-killing bill - Mazibuko

The opposition vows to fight the introduction of the Mineral & Petroleum Resources Development Act.

DA Parliamentary Leader Lindiwe Mazibuko. Picture: Aletta Gardner/EWN

CAPE TOWN - The Democratic Alliance (DA) says it will not support changes to the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act.

The Department of Mineral Resources insists the amendment bill is investor friendly.

But the DA says the changes currently before Parliament will deter investors and kill off jobs in the mining sector.

It will give the Mineral Resources minister the power to decide how mining licences are awarded and other issues by way of regulations that have yet to be drawn up.

DA parliamentary leader Lindiwe Mazibuko and spokesman on mining James Lorimer briefed journalists at Parliament on Thursday.

Mazibuko says the DA cannot back the bill.

"We are not going to stand back while another job-killing bill is introduced in Parliament. We will take up the fight on behalf of the tens of thousands of people who could lose their jobs in the South African mining industry as a result of this bill."

The mining industry has been hit by a wave of industrial action in recent months which has resulted in job losses with major firms looking to cut their costs with the output being affected.

In May, Amplats announced its decision to sack 6,000 workers as part of its restructuring program.

The mining company plans to make a profit by cutting jobs. Workers have the option to apply for voluntary redundancy.

The Congress of the South African Trade Unions has expressed outrage at the company's decision.

The trade union federation says thousands of families will lose their only breadwinners.