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Rival union confrontation erupts at Implats

17 May 2012
JOHANNESBURG ( – Platinum producer Implats reports confrontation between rival unions at its Impala Platinum mine in Rustenburg, the scene of prolonged and violent labour unrest in February.

JSE-listed Implats reports that supporters of the established National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) and the emerging Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU) clashed at two different locations on the mine property on Thursday morning, requiring the intervention of the South African Police Services (SAPS).

AMCU was perceived to have sparked violence at the mine during the February unrest.

In the latest incident, one person sustained a gunshot wound and is in a serious, although not life-threatening, condition.

Earlier this week, Lonmin CEO Ian Farmer said that a third of the employees within its Karee mining division had joined AMCU.

Karee was the scene of another strike last year, which led to 8 000 mineworkers being dismissed and then largely rehired.

It was through the dismissal and rehiring process at Karee that NUM lost membership to AMCU.

AMCU now represents one-third of the employees at Karee, where one-third has chosen not to be represented and only one-third is now represented by the NUM.

Lonmin, which has entered into a limited recognition agreement with AMCU,