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South Africa: Gold firms rebuked for attacks on government

SOUTH AFRICA’S government hit back at “relentless public attacks” by two leading gold producers yesterday, a day after one of their employees died following violence outside a mine.

President Jacob Zuma’s spokesman Bongani Ngqulunga urged Sibanye Gold and Anglogold Ashanti to keep their comments “within the bounds of human decency and decorum and … respect for key institutions in our country.”

The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) confirmed on Wednesday that its member Ranthimo Nkosi had died after being brutally beaten by thugs while trying to go to work at Sibanye’s Gold Cooke 2 mine west of Johannesburg on Tuesday.

The NUM said suspected members of breakaway union Amcu and a hired mob of unemployed men attacked two of its members under the noses of mine security.

Cooke branch secretary Wilson Metsing demanded that the firm take full responsibility, saying management were “warned of a plan to attack our members by these hooligans, but they did nothing,” even failing to call the police.

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