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The entrance to the Sibanye-Stillwater mine. (Iavan Pijoos/News24)
Another fatality has occurred at Sibanye-Stillwater’s Thembelani shaft in Rustenburg, South Africa, according to the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU).
According to an AMCU statement, it is the third fatality of its kind at the mine this year.
“A team leader was unfortunately fatally injured in a fall of ground (FOG) incident. He was from Mozambique,” AMCU said.
“This latest fatality this morning makes for the third FOG-related fatality at Sibanye- Stillwater’s Thembelani shaft. Something is not right at this operation for such repeat events to occur.”
“Sibanye-Stillwater has, to date, killed seven breadwinners in 2019. Four in Lonmin operations and these threat Thembelani shaft. This cannot continue.”
In March and June this year, a rock drill operator died and a scraper winch operator was injured in similar circumstances.
AMCU added that the health and safety steward was still suspended “for raising key safety concerns as to interference from the regulator”.
“AMCU has made a clarion call for the amendments to the Mine Health and Safety Act and such cannot come quick enough.
“The government is quick to amend the Labour Relations Act in attempts to suppress militant unionism but when it comes to amending mine health and safety legislation, we see delays and continued killing of breadwinners, with not one prosecution of any mining boss. Workers are being killed at the altar of capital,” AMCU said.
Sibanye-Stillwater confirmed the incident and said it would be investigated.
“Health, safety and wellness of our employees remain our first, second and third priorit[ies]. We will therefore, together with the relevant regulatory authorities, investigate the circumstances leading to this tragic incident and take appropriate action following the conclusion of the investigation,” Sibanye-Stillwater said in a statement.
“The board and management of Sibanye-Stillwater extends heartfelt condolences to [the worker’s] family, friends and colleagues. The company will ensure that the appropriate support is provided to the family.”Source: News 24