CAPE TOWN South Africa (Xinhua) --
Some members of South Africa’s Parliament on
Sunday called for a legislated way of imposing punitive measures
on mining companies responsible for mining disasters.
Companies found to
have failed to put mechanisms in place to prevent fatalities
must be punished, Parliament’s Portfolio Committee on Mineral
companies need to invest more resources into research and
development of technologies that would detect seismic events
from early stage,” Committee Chairperson Sahlulele Luzipo said
in a statement emailed to Xinhua.
This came after
seven miners were killed at the Sibanye-Stillwater’s Driefontein
gold mine, near Carletonville, Gauteng Province, on Thursday
A total of 13 miners
were trapped underground. Six other miners were injured and
In February this
year, two mine workers lost their lives at the same mine,
according to Luzipo.
“The loss of lives
in the sector cannot continue unchallenged,” said Luzipo.
He said members of
his committee embarked on a week-long oversight visit to Gauteng
from Jan. 29 to Feb. 2 this year, focusing on mine health and
During the visit,
members of the committee saw technological devices designed
specifically to detect early signs of seismic events, he said.
“It is against this
backdrop that we strongly believe that through investment of
resources into research and innovation, a solution could be
found to prevent fatalities and loss of lives during seismic
events,” Luzipo said.
Also on Sunday, the
National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) lambasted the increasingly
poor safety record at the mines, particularly at Sibanye-Stillwater.
The union said it
will engage Sibanye-Stillwater on the issue.
The country’s mining
sector recorded a total of 31 fatalities so far this year,
according to the union.
“The figure is much
higher compared to the same period last year, where we had 28
deaths,” said NUM Health and Safety Secretary Eric Gcilitshana.
Early this year, 955
miners were temporarily trapped at another Sibanye-Stillwater
mine in Welkom, Free State Province, after an electric cable
outage during a storm.
“We will be calling
for discussions with the mine to raise our concerns,”
Gcilitshana said. “There have been far too many fatalities at
Sibanye mines, notably this year alone.”
South African president urges
solutions to “unacceptable rate of death” in mines
CAPE TOWN South
Africa (Xinhua) -- South African President
Cyril Ramaphosa on Saturday called for solutions to “the
unacceptable rate of death” in the country’s mines following the
death of seven miners.
He made the appeal
after the death toll at a South African mine had risen to seven
following initial reports that four workers had passed away.
struck the Sibanye-Stillwater’s Driefontein mine near
Carletonville, Gauteng Province on Thursday and Friday, trapping
a total of 13 miners. Six other miners were injured and rescued.
hope that the investigation into the Driefontein disaster “will
identify the causes of the incident and lead to solutions that
will address the unacceptable rate of death in South African
“We should spare no
cost and no collaboration to ensure that workers are safe and
their families are adequately cared for and compensated when
disaster and tragedy strike,” said Ramaphosa.
The thoughts and
prayers of the government and South Africans at large are with
the families of the deceased miners, among whom are workers from
neighboring states including Mozambique, the president said.
“We also offer our
best wishes to workers who have been directly or indirectly
affected by this disaster, which should move the mining industry
and government to jointly find ways to do all we can to protect
our nation’s most valuable resource—the workers who are at the
heart of our economy,” he said.
As instructed by
Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe, a team of experts is
being formed to help the industry prepare better for seismic
South Africa saw a
rise in mining deaths last year.
The number of
fatalities on South African mines increased to 88 last year, the
first rise in a decade, compared with the 73 deaths recorded in
2016, official statistics show.
A total of 22 miners
have been killed by the end of March this year.
According to the
Department of Mineral Resources, 11,000 mineworkers were killed
between 1984 and 2005, averaging 550 a year.
South African ruling party
outraged by gruesome murder of pensioners
CAPE TOWN South Africa (Xinhua) --
The ruling African National Congress (ANC) on
Saturday expressed outrage at the gruesome murder of two
The ANC is saddened
to learn of “the brutal, callous and cold-blooded” killing of
84-year-old Rosalie Bloch and 96-year-old Aubrey Jackson, who
were found murdered in their Rosebank home in Cape Town earlier
The two pensioners
were the parents of education expert Professor Graeme Bloch.
The elderly couple,
who were declared dead on the scene, had been tied up.
“The ANC is dismayed
and shocked at this evil deed. We strongly condemn the cowardly
act visited on the defenceless and elderly,” ANC national
spokesperson Pule Mabe said in a statement emailed to Xinhua.
“It is disheartening
to note that we still have amongst us, those who are determined
to trample on other people’s right to live driven by selfish and
cruel intentions,” Pale said.
The motive for the
killing is still being investigated. Previous investigation
indicated that it appears to have been a burglary that turned
into a murder.
Sergeant Noloyiso Rwexana said the provincial detectives were
investigating a case of murder and house robbery following the
These are elements
that must be isolated and locked away to rid our society of
heartless criminals, said Mabe.
agencies must indeed leave no stone unturned in their quest to
ensure that perpetrators of this heinous crime are caught and
face the full might of the law,” he said.
The ANC, he said,
further calls on all South Africans to act in concert to ensure
that criminals have nowhere to hide wherever they seek refuge.
highlights the seriousness of rising crimes in South Africa
which is among countries that have the highest crime rate in the
South Africa has
seen a rise in violent crimes in the 2016/2017 financial year,
with murders up 1.8 percent, or 9,016 murders being recorded,
official figures show
South Africans outraged by
murder of female student
CAPE TOWN South Africa (Xinhua) --
South African Minister of International
Relations and Cooperation Lindiwe Sisulu on Thursday joined the
chorus of condemnation against the murder of a female student.
South Africans “are
tired of such senseless killings and will not tolerate them,”
She was referring to
the murder of Zolile Khumalo by her boy friend.
Khumalo, a 21-year
old student at the Mangosuthu University of Technology (MUT),
was shot dead on campus in Durban in full view of her roommate
on Tuesday night following what police described as a domestic
killer, a 23-year-old man, who cannot yet be named, is set to
make his first appearance in the Durban Regional Court on Friday
on charges of murder.
Khumalo’s death sent
a wave of grief through the country.
“We must do more to
protect women from being murdered by partners or former
partners. We trust that the judicial system will take necessary
steps and send a clear message to perpetrators that South
Africans are tired of such senseless killings and will not
tolerate them,” said Sisulu, who is also the Chancellor of the
was the latest in a series of murders of women by their male
partners in South Africa that has been gripped by high level
In the most recent
case, Karabo Mokoena, a 22-year-old girl, was murdered by her
boyfriend Sandile Mantsoe. In trying to destroy evidence,
Montsoe dumped and burned her body.
gruesome acts contributed in painting a negative picture of
South Africa, the African National Congress Women’s League (ANCWL)
The ANCWL is
unapologetic in calling for maximum jail sentences for those
convicted for the barbaric gruesome killings of women and all
forms of gender-based violence, ANCWL Secretary General Meokgo
“Society must unite
and make sure that the gruesome killings of women and all forms
of gender based violence comes to an end. Perpetrators must be
locked in jails for women, children, gays and lesbians to enjoy
their full human rights as citizens,” said Matuba.
South Africa is
among the countries that have the highest rate of violence
against women and children. According to the South African
Medical Research Council, a woman is killed by an intimate
partner every eight hours in the country.
Young women not safe in South
CAPE TOWN South Africa (Xinhua) --
Young women “are not safe in our society” as
indicated by the latest gruesome killing of a female student,
the Presidency lamented on Friday.
“We call on all
student bodies to introduce awareness programs on gender
violence,” Minister in the Presidency Nkosazana Dlamini- Zuma
Dlamini-Zuma was the
latest high-ranking government official who joined the chorus of
condemnation against the murder of Zolile Khumalo, a 21-year-old
student at the Mangosuthu University of Technology (MUT) in
Durban, allegedly by her boy friend.
Khumalo was shot
dead on campus in full view of her roommate on Tuesday night
following what police described as a domestic quarrel.
Minister of International Relations and Cooperation Lindiwe
Sisulu condemned the killing, saying South Africans “are tired
of such senseless killings and will not tolerate them.”
The murder of
Khumalo highlights the seriousness of gender-based violence in
South Africa where a woman is killed by an intimate partner
every eight hours in the country, according to the South African
Medical Research Council.
“Although it is not
our intention to pre-empt the motive behind Khumalo’s killing,
it is clear that young women are not safe in our society,”
universities and other institutions of higher learning to take
precautionary measures to improve security to ensure the safety
of students in their care.
“It is not
acceptable that some one could easily breach security to commit
such a heinous crime,” said Dlamini-Zuma.
The law enforcement
agencies must swiftly investigate the murder and bring the
perpetrator to book, she said.
occurred less than two days before the South Gauteng High Court
on Thursday sentenced convicted murderer Sandile Mantsoe to an
effective 32 years in prison for murdering Karabo Mokoena, a
22-year-old girl last year.
In trying to destroy
evidence, Montsoe dumped and burned Mokoena’s body in a case
that shocked the nation.
“We condemn in the
strongest terms the killing of Khumalo and trust that our
justice system will prevail the same way it did in the case of
Mantsoe,” Dlamini-Zuma said.
The sentencing of
Mantsoe should send a stern warning to all other perpetrators of
violence against women to desist from committing such deplorable
acts, she said.
“We have full
confidence in our law enforcement that those implicated in the
murder of Khumalo will be brought to book,” the minister said.
The accused killer
of Khumalo, a 23-year-old man, who cannot yet be named, made his
first appearance in the Durban Regional Court on Friday on
charges of murder.