South Africa adopts hard-line stance on labour relations

South Africa is moving ahead this week with efforts to stabilize the country's mining industry.

President Jacob Zuma said Wednesday he would push a hard line on labour disputes in the mining sector which have been causing uncertainty in the country’s economy, reports Reuters.

Addressing parliament, Zuma said people who commit crime in the name of labour relations would face the full might of the law and police have been given a no-tolerance directive.

Additionally, he said the government wouldn’t come between or take sides in the competition for members between the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union and the National Union of Mineworkers.

AllAfrica.com reports that Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe will meet Friday with business, labour and government representatives and ask them to avoid any crisis in the mining sector.

The government said the talks would look at what necessary action is needed to stabilize both the industry and the economy, as well as ensure that all parties abide by the law.

It also said it would step up the police presence in Rustenberg, where two mineworkers were killed in recent shootings.

Last year, during a labour strike at the Marikana platinum mine, 44 people were killed, many shot by police, which is now being probed by a judicial inquiry commission.

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