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Lily Mine: Dept to investigate collapse after recovery mission

Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane says their aim now is to get to the container.

Mosebenzi Zwane, South African Minister of Mineral Resources. Picture: AFP.

JOHANNEBSURG - Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane says his department will investigate exactly what led to the collapse of a section of Lily Mine once the recovery mission is complete.

Yesterday, mine owners Vantage Goldfields and Zwane announced that teams will now begin digging from a new point of entry, but this could take up to six months.

It's been over a month since the collapse left Pretty Nkambule, Solomon Nyerende and Yvonne Mnisi trapped in a container underground.

Zwane says safety and security at mines remains a priority.

"Our primary aim now is to ensure that we get the container to the surface and start with what we're supposed to do in terms of investigations moving forward."

WATCH: Lily Mine rescue plan hinges on new escape route

CALLS FOR LILY MINE MANAGEMENT TO OWN UP

The Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) said management at the Lily Mine must take responsibility for the collapse.

Cosatu's General Secretary Bheki Ntshalintshali said government must to hold mine bosses accountable.

"They have tried to camouflage their carelessness using a public relations stunt where Cosatu leaders have stopped visiting the mine. Government will ensure they don't get away with this irresponsible behaviour."