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Workers at Northam Platinum picket at Zondereinde mine

The company has denied media reports that it had shut operations there as a result.

FILE: Northam Platinum's Zondereinde mine. Picture: Northam Platinum.

JOHANNESBURG - South Africa's Northam Platinum on Monday said a group of mine workers were protesting outside its flagship Zondereinde mine but denied media reports that it had shut operations there as a result.

"We can confirm that there is a small demonstration by a group of employees. Management are seeking to engage with employees and find out what their grievances," Northam spokeswoman Charmane Russell said.

Russell would not say whether the protesters were members of the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) or rival Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union, who are engaged in a violent turf war in the mining industry.

The majority NUM union downed tools for a week in January at Zondereinde, calling for Northam's chief executive to step down over what it said were unfair hiring and firing practices.