This came after six mine workers were killed in three separate accidents within two months at Impala Platinum Mine in North West.


In December last year and early January this year, two miners were killed in two separate accidents at the mine. Last Friday four more miners were killed by underground fire.

The three accidents at the same mine have raised serious concerns from Parliament’s Portfolio Committee on Mineral Resources.

“We regard one death as one too many and would like to extend our deepest and sincere condolences to all the bereaved families,” Committee Chairperson Sahlulele Luzipo said.

The committee is worried about safety of workers at the mine, especially because it appears as if it took the Minister of Mineral Resources Mosebenzi Zwane to stop operation at the affected shafts in order to allow investigations to take place, Luzipo said.

Following Friday’s accident, Zwane instructed that an investigation should commence urgently to determine what had led to the incident.

The minister also ordered that no mining would take place until the department has declared the area safe for workers.

While welcoming the swift intervention by Zwane, Luzipo said the Department of Mineral Resources should increase their regular safety checks and take stringent actions against those who fail to comply with health and safety standards, “including considering making non-compliance a criminal offense with a charge of culpable homicide or murder”.

“This is informed by the fact that the committee has raised concerns already about under-expenditure by the Mine Health and Safety Council.

“In light of all these, the committee calls on the department to move with speed regarding the Mine Health and Safety Amendment Bill,” Luzipo said.

The amendment bill is expected to introduce stringent measures to prevent mine accidents. Enditem

Source: Xinhua


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