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Unions want govt intervention in mining sector after latest worker death

At least 21 mine workers have died on duty at Sibanye Stillwater's operations this year, with the latest death confirmed on Tuesday by the company at Driefontein on the West Rand.

The Masakhane shaft at Sibanye-Stillwater's Driefontein mine near Carletonville. Picture: Christa Eybers/EWN

JOHANNESBURG – Mining unions have urged government to intervene in the industry after another miner was killed.

At least 21 mine workers have died on duty at Sibanye Stillwater's operations this year, with the latest death confirmed on Tuesday by the company at Driefontein on the West Rand.

A 35-year-old mine worker was found at the Khomanani mine in the early hours of Tuesday morning.

At least 17 mineworkers have died in seven incidents at Sibanye-Stillwater mines since the start of the year. Picture: EWN

The Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu)'s Joseph Mathunjwa says that President Cyril Ramaphosa should assist in the fast-tracking of a new draft of the Mining Health and Safety Act.

“We still call upon the state president that his intervention will play a very vital role in the safety of the mining industry and workers.”

Congress of South African Trade Unions' Bheki Ntshalintshali says that the act allows for employees to refuse to perform work that poses as a threat to their lives.

“We’re calling for unions to make proposals to the legislation.”

The Department of Mineral Resources is yet to release the outcome of various investigations into fatalities at mines.

(Edited by Leeto M Khoza)