South Africa platinum mine death toll reach nine as rival unions clash

A nightshift policeman hacked to death during clashes between rival unions brings to nine the number of fatalities at Lonmin's platinum mine in the North West province of South Africa.

News24 reports one other police officer and three workers were killed in  violence on Monday following four deaths over the weekend in including two security guards who were killed when their car was set alight.

Several  mineworkers were also shot and wounded on Friday and Saturday in violence at the mine which authorities have been unable to bring under control.

According to the South African news website members of the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) and the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) are fighting for control of mines in the country's platinum belt.

South Africa accounts for 75% of world PGM output, but the industry is under severe pressure from a combination of surging costs, lower output and depressed prices for the precious metals.