Amcu worried about future for Lily Mine workers

The union fears for the sustainability of the mine which has been placed under business rescue.

The Lily Mine in Barberton, Mpumalanga. Picture: Vantage Goldfields Limited.

JOHANNESBURG - Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) says workers at the Lily Mine in Barberton, Mpumalanga, have not yet been paid this month, because business rescue practitioners have moved their pay day.

The mine was placed under business rescue after suspending operations in February because of a massive collapse that trapped three workers, Pretty Nkambule, Solomon Nyerende and Yvonne Mnisi, in a container underground. Their bodies have not yet been retrieved.

Amcu says the mine's workers will be paid on Friday but the union is concerned about the future of its members and the sustainability of the mine.

Spokesperson Manzini Zungu said, "Lest we forget that we still have three workers stuck underground and that's a huge concern for the families, members and workers at large."


Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane said last week that government was going to try a new way of bringing to the surface the container.

Zwane said teams would now try another route to retrieve the container.

"We've since agreed on another new approach, an approach which is called a decline where you're removing soil until you get to the container. That's what we're doing and we've been informed that it will not take less than six months."

Earlier this month, Amcu leader Joseph Mathunjwa said despite several attempts to retrieve the container from the mine, government had still not taken any action.

He added that there were promises to get the container out within six months.