South Africa miners celebrate wage deal

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Bodlani said the workers will return to Lonmin’s Marikana mine on Thursday morning, but they will not go underground.

“They will receive counseling and training for a few days,” he said. The miners living in the Wonderkop informal settlement also hope to make a memorial of the rock hill where they saw 34 of their colleagues killed by police, he said.

Joseph Mathunjwa, of the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union, said that they will be putting a trust fund together for the families who lost members to the shootings.

Delegates from unions, strikers not represented by unions, and the London-registered company signed the final wage deal late Tuesday night in Mooinooi, close to Marikana.

The agreement for the company’s miners ends a strike with political and economic repercussions, but does not resolve South Africa’s huge economic inequality and the government’s failure to address massive unemployment and poverty.

The South Africa Press Association reported that Cosatu welcomed the end of the strike.

“We hope that peace and safety will now be restored to the mine and the surrounding communities,” said the Congress of SA Trade Unions (Cosatu), whose affiliate the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) had been publicly criticised by many of the mineworkers on strike, according to SAPA.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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