Miners staging underground sit-in re-surface

Amcu miners went underground in a protest over the death of a colleague saying he died in the line of duty.

FILE: Sibanye Gold says the miners are abandoning their sit in so they can hold talks. Picture: AFP.

JOHANNESBURG - Sibanye Gold says dozens of miners are now re-surfacing after staging an underground sit-in at the Driefontein Mine in Carletonville.

The Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) miners went underground on Tuesday morning in a protest over the death of a colleague two weeks ago.

The group says Sibanye is refusing to acknowledge that the man died in the line of duty and not of natural causes.

But the company says a forensic pathologist report has not yet been completed.

Sibanye spokesperson James Wellsted says the miners are abandoning their sit in so they can hold talks.

"We will engage with them on the surface in a proper manner; we can't engage with them while they are pursuing an illegal strike activity. Particularly the type of activity which poses a safety risk, so we are currently hoisting them to surface."

Meanwhile, Sibanye Gold says it will be taking disciplinary action against dozens of mineworkers who staged the sit-in saying the strike was illegal and has cost the company two days of production.

Wellsted said, "We'll continue with processes as per our policies. It was an illegal sit-in and unprotected which means they have exposed themselves to disciplinary action."