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Amcu: Deployment of cops a 'recipe for disaster'

Joseph Mathunjwa made the comments before hundreds of striking miners in Marikana.

Thousands of miners in Marikana gathered at the stadium to be addressed by Amcu leaders on 14 May 2014. Picture: Vumani Mkhize/EWN.

MARIKANA - The deployment of police in Marikana is a recipe for disaster, Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) President Joseph Mathunjwa said on Wednesday.

He was addressing thousands of mineworkers at the Wonderkop Stadium in Marikana earlier in the day.

Mathunjwa's warning to Lonmin bosses and government came as the mining company confirmed some workers had started reporting for duty.

But despite the warning, National Police Commissioner Riah Phiyega is heading to the volatile area.

Amcu's strike for a basic salary of R12,500 is now in its fourth month.

Four people, including three miners, have been killed in the past week in what is suspected to be strike-related violence in the North West mining town.

Marikana was the scene of a deadly August 2012 shooting by police in which 34 striking workers were gunned down in the area.

The Amcu leader said the increased police presence reminded him of the deadly 2012 strike by rock drill operators.

"Deploying the police in the issue of labour relations is a recipe for disaster."

Mathunjwa also lashed out at North West Premier Thandi Modise who called for an end to the strike, saying her interests have been exposed.

"It shows that maybe they are benefitting from these mines. So when we hit the mines, their purses get drier and drier."

Mathunjwa maintains Amcu members won't end their strike until their demands are met.

He said he's confident Lonmin miners won't return to work until a settlement is reached.

Non-unionised mineworkers have spoken out about a climate of fear on the platinum belt and brutal attacks on workers who dare report for duty.

The Chamber of Mines earlier called on Amcu and Lonmin to honour their commitment to a peace accord and end the violence.