A mineworker at the Anglo American Platinum (Amplats) mine in Rustenburg has been found dead on a hill at the Nkaneng informal settlement in Photsaneng, North West. “Our comrade was shot dead, he was shot last night [Thursday]. His body is still there [at the hill], where he was shot,” Gaddhafi Mdoda, one of the workers’ leaders, said on Friday. He said the police fired teargas and rubber bullets at workers who had gathered on the hill near the informal settlement. “They first gathered at the Bleskop hostel and were ordered to leave. They went to the informal settlement.They were also ordered to disperse and they went to the hill to continue with their meeting.”
Here the police ordered them to disperse, counted to 10, and fired teargas and rubber bullets, he said. The North West police could not immediately confirm the death. Captain Amanda Funani said they would release a statement once they had all the details. Meanwhile, striking workers barricaded roads linking Rustenburg to Marikana with rocks and burning tyres.
The workers went on a “wildcat” strike without following labour law procedures on September 12, demanding a R16 000 monthly salary and allowances. Since then, shops and cars have been burnt. On Monday, six cars driving past the mine’s shafts were burnt and two shops looted and burnt. One of the shops belonged to a Pakistani man, and was situated next to the mine’s Jabula hostel, in Sondela. Despites threats of dismissals if they did not return to work, the workers remained defiant.