Sanity should return at Vumbachikwe Mine 

A fortnight ago, we carried a story in which Vumbachikwe Mine turned into a site for an orgy of
violence, stemming from non-payment of workers' salaries for more than three months.
On the day, wives of Vumbachikwe Mine workers barricaded the main gate with the intention of
blocking their spouses from going to their shifts in protest against non-salary payments.
Wives of the mine workers demanded answers from the mine management, who did not address
their plight.
This resulted in the unprecedented violence as the demonstrators sought answers from the
Police were called to quell the mayhem.
It’s now over two weeks after the incident and the situation at the mine has deteriorated.
All is at a standstill, with no workers reporting for duty.
What has made the situation bizarre is the silence of the Vumbachikwe Mine management,
which is mum on what is happening.
The management is being hostile to the media and cannot even issue a statement to the affected
Vumbachikwe Mine operations have been shoddy in the past few years that have seen hiring and
firing of several top-ranked workers but nothing seems to be changing for the better.
The mayhem also exposed several allegations, which if proved true, could see management
having serious cases to answer.
One case of a retired worker is that he worked for the mine for 35 years and pension deductions
were being made but he found out that the mine was not remitting the deductions.
This could just be the tip of the iceberg.
Vumbachikwe Mine's situation is a far cry from what their neighbours at Blanket Mine which is
experiencing a boom, and is arguably the most prosperous gold mining company at the moment.
They should take a cue from their neighbours who are less than 10 km away.
In the meantime, something urgent has to be done to cater for the plight of thousands of workers
at Vumbachikwe Mine affected by the current standoff.

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