South Africa send miner warning
on 14/09/2012 13:47:29
The offer was a 900 rand increase that would give new-entry workers a basic monthly salary of 5,500 rand.
But leaders of striking miners at the Lonmin platinum mine in Marikana said the offer fell far below their demands for a minimum salary of 12,500 rand.
Minister Jeff Radebe told reporters the government will no longer tolerate the illegal protests where miners brandish machetes, knives, spears and clubs.
Such marches have become daily events as the strike at the Lonmin mine enters its fifth week.
Mr Radebe refused to say whether police will be allowed to use live ammunition. Police opened fire on striking Lonmin workers on August 16, killing 34 and wounding 78 in a display of state violence that shocked the nation.
The strike has spread to the world's largest platinum mine, Anglo American Platinum, and has also stopped work at a gold mine.
Miners are calling on co-workers to shut down mines nationwide, raising fears for the future of South Africa's biggest industry.