21 January 2014

South Africa: Govt Calls for Peaceful Protest

Photo: Werner Beukes/SAPA
Striking mineworkers (file photo).

Pretoria — As mineworkers in some of the country's platinum mines prepare to go on strike, government has urged all parties involved in the current wage dispute to engage in meaningful negotiations to resolve the dispute.

"Whilst workers have the right to protest, as enshrined in the Constitution of the Republic, we encourage the protest to be within the confines of the law. Protestors are thereby urged to abide by the rule of law and act responsibly should they take the decision to go ahead with the strike.

"As South Africa remains a destination for investment and business opportunities, government urges the parties to resolve their disputes promptly in the interest of the country's economy," said acting Government Communication and Information System (GCIS) CEO, Phumla Williams.

Mining remains a vital sector for South Africa's economy, contributing significantly to GDP growth, job creation and foreign exchange earnings.

"Mining and its related industries is critical to the country's economic development. It has shaped the country culturally and economically. The South African mining sector has contributed immensely to a number of industries that are either suppliers to the mining industry or users of its products. This demonstrates the importance of South Africa on a global mineral production gauge," Williams said.


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