South African: Striking Miners Killed as Police Open Fire

Discussion in 'world politics, current affairs and news' started by audiotech, Aug 16, 2012.

  1. dennisr

    dennisr the acceptable face

    I wanted to come back to you on this. I was not sure it was the same fella when reading earlier reports about the dispute but now it has been mentioned on the CWI site.
    Do you realise that the DSM (CWI in South Africa) is playing a central role in this dispute?

    Miners’ struggle spreads and intensifies 14/09/2012
    Press reports on impact of Democratic Socialist Movement (CWI)

    The organisation and strategy of the strikers has also seen big steps forward in the recent past. Members of Democratic Socialist Movement (CWI in South Africa), have been central to the initiatives taken to unite democratic representatives of the striking miners in co-ordinating committees, to discuss the further spreading of the struggle and the next steps for its escalation. As we speak, preparations for a general strike of the mining areas, one of the necessary steps emphasised by DSM, are being made.

    Yesterday alone, even the capitalist press in South Africa and internationally saw fit to comment on the role of DSM in the struggle, most notably that of Mametlwe Sebei, a trade union leader and leading member of DSM. Organs such as the French Le Monde, British BBC, and US Wall Street Journal all making explicit references to the DSM. As an example, the South African Times paper reported: "In North West, mineworkers rejecting the formal unions have formed a Rustenburg Workers and Communities Forum under the leadership of the Democratic Socialist Movement, affiliate of the Committee for Workers’ International"

    It may come as a shock to naysayers about "trots" - but first Kazachstan now this - folk have to recognise that some so-called "trots" are far from student stereotypes and are playing a serious role in serious struggles. Like it or not. The slightly pathetic insinuations about an organisation's long past failed individual ex-members are misplaced. What matters are those folk who remain - serious worker militants who are now playing an important role in developing a general strike situation. Like any organisation - particularly with the collapse of stalinism and then apartheid - some individuals became disorientated - the role of the collective group was to try and steer a way through that avoided the traps such individuals fell into. DSM has successfully achieved that despite the difficulties encountered and the present role we are playing speaks for itself. We have nothing to be ashamed of in that respect - just sadness for the loss of some past militants along the way. Some might not like it but our ideas have some weight yet.
  2. dennisr

    dennisr the acceptable face

  3. dennisr

    dennisr the acceptable face

    South Africa mine unrest costs £335m in lost output

    One workers' representative dismissed Amplats' plan to reopen its Rustenburg mines as a "joke".
    "For us, the reality is that the general strike is on," Mametlwe Sebei, a self-styled Rustenburg community leader and Marxist politician, told Reuters. "We are going to be demonstrating in defiance. We will not be intimidated."
    Amplats management was "whistling in the dark" if it believed the mines would reopen on Tuesday, he said.
    "They can deploy the army, they can be shooting people, shooting old men in their shacks, teargassing young kids ... but let us be clear, there will be repercussions."

    (Sebei - is a leading member of DSM - SA CWI - Guardian liberals hint suggestively at dark possibly dodgy forces at work in "turf war")

    In reality DSM is calling for:

    "A union worth the name should also call for the all workers, whether they belong to AMCU, NUM or another union, to unite behind the demand for a living wage for all. The crisis can only be resolved by workers uniting across union and tribal lines."
  4. dennisr

    dennisr the acceptable face

  5. dennisr

    dennisr the acceptable face

    Marikana massacre ignites the mass movement

    One last update.

    "The six-week Marikana strike ended on 18 September. The miners accepted a 22% pay rise and a 2,000 rand payment for loss of earnings during the strike. This is less than the miners’ original demand, but was celebrated as a victory after the ANC government tried to crush the strike with lethal repression."
    "CONTRARY TO THE parallel myth that this summer’s dispute was the fallout from rivalry between the NUM and the breakaway Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu), the strike committee was established independently of both unions. In fact, the first pre-massacre killings took place when the independent strike committee approached the NUM office to discuss unity in action. Two of the delegates were shot and killed from the direction of the NUM office. Police and private security were sent in to suppress the independent workers’ committee and prevent the strike from taking off. Precisely what the circumstances were of the killings of the police and security guards remains unclear. Despite this, the killings were used as a pretext to demonise the workers as bloodthirsty and intent on sowing mindless mayhem.
    Recognising that they were vulnerable in the mineshafts, the workers decided to move off the mine premises and to occupy Wonderkop hill. It was, in other words, an act of self-defence not aggression. Workers, however, had had a sense of foreboding for days before the massacre. It was their vulnerability, their determination to maintain unity that led to them resorting to superstitious rituals and the use of muti (traditional medicine). It was intended to convey a message of determination, that they would stand their ground in the face of management and police threats, rather than a genuine belief among the majority that the muti could render them invisible."
  6. dennisr

    dennisr the acceptable face

    Wildcat strike movement may birth new political party

    The bloody violence, police clampdowns and wildcat labour strife that’s spreading across the country like a virus is not just about wages and living conditions, it’s about something much bigger. It is the contagious birth struggle of an emerging socialist movement that could deliver a new labour party to South Africa.


    But the industrial action isn’t only about better wages, says Mametlwe Sebei, a leader in SA’s Democratic Socialist Movement, which is helping to co-ordinate independent strike committees in Rustenburg and beyond.
    “We are campaigning for a new party, for a labour or socialist party to emerge,” says Sebei, who added that the Democratic Socialist Movement was mandated to draw up a resolution that can be voted on by mine workers to make a case for a party. The paper, which has not yet been circulated amongst workers, would also highlight the programme and ideology of what would be a new socialist, labour party.
    “This is not an idea that emerged from us at the Democratic Socialist Movement, but in actual fact it has emerged on the ground,” says Sebei. “That is not to say that we haven’t been consciously campaigning for this, but the circumstances and conditions in Rustenburg have rapidly changed consciousness. What the workers are asking is: ‘What are we doing about this government that is killing us?’ The ANC has never represented the working class, and even though this country has been built on the blood of mining workers, neither does Cosatu.”
  7. Idris2002

    Idris2002 the liberation forces make movies of their own

    I try to keep up with African news . . . and that means reading the African oriented business press as well. The current issue of African Business had a headline that promised an account of how bad media reporting "escalated" the Marikana crisis. Seeing that, I thought they'd be talking about the run-up to the massacre itself. In fact, their story was an extended whinge about how initial reporting on the crisis underestimated the amount of take-home pay the workers at the rockface get. Even if it's higher than was initially thought, though, it's still not much, and certainly not what people should be expected to put up with, especially in one of the most unequal societies on earth. But that will probably be the cover story from now on in.
  8. Fuchs66

    Fuchs66 Ring a ding

    12000 miners sacked by Amplats

  9. shygirl

    shygirl Well-Known Member

    Just heard this on the news. Absolutely appalling. Isn't it a British company?
  10. Fuchs66

    Fuchs66 Ring a ding

  11. Badgers

    Badgers Mr Big Shrimp!

    Anglo American Platinum Limited (Amplats)
    Pickman's model likes this.
  12. yield

    yield zero

  13. DaveCinzano


    Anglo American Platinum is no stranger to dirty tricks, or shady deals - but it's not just about one company, they're all at it, stripping the earth and treating workers no better than indentured labour.

    Canadian resource bandits Falconbridge had half of the West Plats mine alongside Lonrho, as well as huge stakes in Apartheid-era mines in South West Africa (Namibia) - Oamites (copper) - plus gold mines in Zimbabwe, copper in Uganda etc... Then there's South African diamond pirates De Beers (of course), JCI Ltd, Mwana Africa PLC, etc.
  14. yield

    yield zero

  15. Riklet

    Riklet procrastinación

  16. DaveCinzano


    From that article:

    Riklet likes this.
  17. dennisr

    dennisr the acceptable face

    Mine violence moves to Rustenburg's platinum belt
    Tensions are rising after an Anglo American Platinum worker was shot dead by police last week and 12,000 people were sacked

    "They shot that worker in cold blood. It is nothing more than cold-blooded murder, but the state doesn't have the political courage to own up to this," Mametlwe Sebei, a leader in SA's Democratic Socialist Movement, told Daily Maverick. Sebei is talking about 48-year-old mine worker Mtshunquleni Qakamba, who died after police opened fire on strikers. The workers gathered on a hill adjacent to Anglo American Platinum's Merensky reef near Rustenburg on Thursday 04 October 2012, to get an update on the wildcat strike.
    The next day, 12,000 miners were dismissed by Amplats, as management and unions were set to start talks in a move that draw fighting talk from strike leaders. "Despite the company's repeated calls for employees to return to work, we have continued to experience attendance levels of less than 20%," reads a statement from Amplats, which has lost some R700 million in revenue since the strike began.
  18. Idris2002

    Idris2002 the liberation forces make movies of their own

    Now witnesses, who were to give evidence at the inquiry into the massacre, are being killed:
  19. teqniq

    teqniq DisMembered

    :( fucking scumbags :(
  20. Idris2002

    Idris2002 the liberation forces make movies of their own

    You're not fucking wrong.
  21. Idris2002

    Idris2002 the liberation forces make movies of their own

    This is what Chris Hani died for?

  22. elbows

    elbows WoeTimer

    The commission is going nuts because, surprise surprise, the police unit invoked have been caught feeding them bullshit and withholding stuff :

  23. Idris2002

    Idris2002 the liberation forces make movies of their own

    Meanwhile. . .

  24. butchersapron

    butchersapron blood on the walls

    Enjoy your freedoom

    The inquiry into the killing of 34 South African miners in 2012 is out. Its most strident conclusion? That there should be more inquiries

    Their relatives have waited more than 1,000 days to find out who was responsible for cutting those stories short and why. Last week, the findings of a judicial inquiry into the killings were finally made public. Most of the families missed the start of a speech by the South African president, Jacob Zuma, because the government hadn’t bothered to give them proper notice that a statement was imminent. The rest came through only in fragments, via a single erratic laptop feed in a language that many could not understand.
  25. N_igma

    N_igma Epistemic nuisance

    And the winner is CAPITAL! Everyone give capital a round of applause now
    frogwoman likes this.
  26. Idris2002

    Idris2002 the liberation forces make movies of their own

    One bit of fallout:

    "Marikana is likely to be a new whip for the EFF to beat the ANC with, with the two parties already on a collision course over Nkandla. The EFF plan of action on Marikana includes demanding reparations from Lonmin. Malema said Lonmin should pay the families of the deceased mineworkers R10 million each, and all injured workers should receive R5 million each.

    The EFF says they will also report Lonmin to the South African Revenue Service for “all cases of aggressive tax avoidance”. This is after the commission agreed with the evidence leaders that Lonmin’s excuse that it could not meet its housing obligations for the workers was incorrect. The evidence leaders submitted that between 2007-2011, when Lonmin claimed it could not afford its housing obligations budgeted at R665 million, it paid more than R1.3 billion in “marketing commission” payments to Lonmin Plc and/or its Bermudan registered subsidiary, Western Metal Sales Ltd."
  27. DaveCinzano


    Posted here as it's sort of similar:

    Opponent of Xolobeni titanium mine assassinated
  28. Idris2002

    Idris2002 the liberation forces make movies of their own

    Listening to this SA phone-in show asking people why they won't vote ANC (don't know if the link will work):

    Anyway, Marikana is a consistent reason why people won't be voting for them.
    gawkrodger and Pickman's model like this.
  29. Idris2002

    Idris2002 the liberation forces make movies of their own

    Libertad likes this.
  30. 8ball

    8ball Up to something

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