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Friday, 7 September 2012
South African miners defiant
A GROUP of 106 South African mineworkers, arrested following the police shooting at UK-based Lonmin’s Marikana mine, were released yesterday by the Ga-Rankuwa Magistrate’s Court.
Two more men were still in hospital, and have yet to be released. Another 162 men were released on Monday.
They were cautioned not to contravene the Public Violence Act, the Gatherings Act, the Dangerous Weapons Act, or the Firearms Control Act.
The workers left Ga-Rankuwa in minibus taxis supplied by Friends of the Youth League, an organisation allied to expelled ANC Youth League president Julius Malema.
Malema went on to march with the striking workers at the Marikana mine where police shot dead 34 people last month.
He said mineworkers must put down tools until their wage demands are met after the independent Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU) rejected a deal with Lonmin and the government which the ANC supporting NUM signed.
The rock drillers vowed to intensify their strike action by confronting the handful who report for duty.
Malema said: ‘I’m not calling for violence. I’m not calling for killing of anybody.
‘Workers must refuse to sell their labour. Enough is enough, unless capital is prepared to pay enough living wage.’
Earlier, the ANC government said it would not tolerate any incitement to violence or what it called unwarranted provocation.
Malema said foreign investors had ‘stolen everything in this country, we are prepared to do everything to get back what belongs to us.’
He said the only answer was nationalisation of the mines, but added: ‘We do not call for wholesale nationalisation.’
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