Notorious for the tragic death of 32 miners at Marikana area in 2012, the Platinum Belt in South Africa has become the scene of a bloody struggle for power between two labour unions, the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) and Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU).
On Friday, Reuters reported that a branch chairman at Eastern Platinum Mine, a unit of Lonmin had been gunned down by unknown assailants and died in the hospital hour later. Wendy Tlou, a spokesperson of Lonmin as well as the National Spokesperson of Livhuwani Mammburu, confirmed the incident.
Tlou could not disclose what Lonmin thought was behind the killing, saying the company was waiting for the official version from police. “We don’t know the motive of the murder at this stage.”
The death of the NUM leader is seen as the latest incident in a spate of slayings in which members of the two rival trade unions have lost their lives.
The two trade unions have been denied responsibility for the gory escalation of the violence.