Skip to main content

8,100 South African mine workers fired

From Nkepile Mabuse, CNN
October 24, 2012 -- Updated 1315 GMT (2115 HKT)
A striking miner at the AngloGold Ashanti mine in Carletonville, 84kms northwest of Johannesburg, on October 22, 2012.
A striking miner at the AngloGold Ashanti mine in Carletonville, 84kms northwest of Johannesburg, on October 22, 2012.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Workers at a Gold Fields Limited mine had been on strike since August
  • Many returned to work this week; those who didn't are fired
  • The fired workers have 24 hours to appeal

(CNN) -- Operators of a South African gold mine fired 8,100 striking workers after they did not return to work.

Some 15,000 workers at Gold Fields Limited's KDC East mine near Johannesburg had been participating in an on-again, off-again strike since August.

Many workers returned to work this week, and the company said it fired those who did not return.

Read: SA commission probing miners' deaths starts

The fired workers were given 24 hours -- until Wednesday evening -- to appeal the decision, company spokesman Sven Lunsche said.

Gold sector talks tough in South Africa
South African miners back to work

The line of workers wanting to appeal stretched for a kilometer.

The workers at the Gold Fields mine had gone of strike to seek higher pay, the same as workers at several other South Africa mines.

The firings at Gold Fields Limited mark the latest incident in a wave of sometimes-violent labor unrest that has wracked South Africa's mining sector -- the country's biggest industry -- for nearly two months. Another company, Anglo-American Platinum, fired about 12,000 striking workers who declined to attend disciplinary hearings last week after a three-week walkout.

Four people were wounded during clashes between security officers and striking workers at a Gold One mine in September. And police fired on strikers at Lonmin's Marikana platinum mine in August, killing 34 workers and wounding dozens.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 1526 GMT (2326 HKT)
Advocates say the exam includes unnecessarily invasive and irrelevant procedures -- like a so-called "two finger" test.
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 0009 GMT (0809 HKT)
Supplies of food, clothing and fuel are running short in Damascus and people are going hungry as the civil war drags on.
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 1801 GMT (0201 HKT)
Supporters of Richard III want a reconstruction of his head to bring a human aspect to a leader portrayed as a murderous villain.
February 5, 2013 -- Updated 1548 GMT (2348 HKT)
Robert Fowler spent 130 days held hostage by the same al Qaeda group that was behind the Algeria massacre. He shares his experience.
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 0507 GMT (1307 HKT)
As "We are the World" plays, a video shows what looks like a nuclear attack on the U.S. Jim Clancy reports on a bizarre video from North Korea.
The relationship is, once again, cold enough to make Obama's much-trumpeted "reset" in Russian-U.S. relations seem thoroughly off the rails.
Ten years on, what do you think the Iraq war has changed in you, and in your country? Send us your thoughts and experiences.
February 5, 2013 -- Updated 1215 GMT (2015 HKT)
Musician Daniela Mercury has sold more than 12 million albums worldwide over a career span of nearly 30 years.
Photojournalist Alison Wright travelled the world to capture its many faces in her latest book, "Face to Face: Portraits of the Human Spirit."
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 0006 GMT (0806 HKT)
Europol claims 380 soccer matches, including top level ones, were fixed - as the scandal widens, CNN's Dan Rivers looks at how it's done.
February 6, 2013 -- Updated 1237 GMT (2037 HKT)
That galaxy far, far away is apparently bigger than first thought. The "Star Wars" franchise will get two spinoff movies, Disney announced.
February 8, 2013 -- Updated 0718 GMT (1518 HKT)
It's an essential part of any trip, an activity we all take part in. Yet almost none of us are any good at it. Souvenir buying is too often an obligatory slog.
ADVERTISEMENT