Lonmin questioned on social responsibility

Pretoria - Lonmin management needs to provide answers about its social responsibilities, the lack of which possibly contributed to the strike action that left 44 people dead, the Farlam Commission of Inquiry heard in Pretoria on Monday.

The commission chair, retired judge Ian Farlam, ruled that the mining company would be questioned on its aborted programmes that included building houses for its mineworkers.

In a bid to avoid the grilling, the company had applied not to be questioned.

The move followed the decision to scrap phase two of the commission's work due to time constraints.

Lonmin was to face these questions during workshops which were part of the commission.

This part of the commission was abandoned and Lonmin argued that it would not have sufficient time to prepare for the questions, which had now been fused into the hearing.

The inquiry is probing the events around the August 2012 strike-related unrest.

In its objection to cross-examination, the platinum mining company argued that social responsibilities were outside the commission's mandate.

It also claimed it would be unfair to be questioned on this during the first phase as it had not had enough time to prepare.

Farlam on Monday rejected the response.

"In our view there is no substance in any of these grounds of objection,"he said.


Meanwhile, the commission on Monday heard evidence from Xolani Nzuza, a mineworker who was part of a group which led the strike.

Xolani told the commission that the unrest occurred because of Lonmin's response to their calls for a meeting with management.

"The cause of all that happened there is because of a lack of care from Lonmin and them calling us criminals," said Nzuza.

"Had they not called us criminals, this would have not happened."

He denied that muti played a crucial role in the unrest.

"Not everybody believed in the muti. Others believed in their prayers," said Nzuza.

He claimed workers used the muti to protect themselves and they believed it would make the mine bosses listen to them.

No one was forced to use the muti and those that did, did so openly.

Nzuza's testimony will be put on hold on Tuesday while Minister of Mineral Resources, Susan Shabangu, testifies.

Kiss123 2014-08-26 01:15:18 AM
Stop having children , thats your social responsibility PERIOD !
WildCatSally 2014-08-26 01:37:08 AM
Oh what. Surprise! This "blame game" is in full swing on THIS repetitive old Merry-go-round and seems to be spinning faster and faster out of control after TWO very expensive years (bill footed by us tax payers again) Take responsibility for this major screw up, ONE being proper training for "crowd and riot control". Again.. Lazy MPs sitting on their large posteriors raking in fat salaries and perks as and do turn a blind eye. Companies looking after their blood soaked profits. Complacency will get you nowhere. Make amends, take serious precautions from now on. Bottom line.. This spelled unnecessary murder. Strikers where at their wits end whether we like it or not. This whole fiasco could of been avoided if handled in a more responsible manner. There.. I've SAID it. GatVol!
Jono Boardman 2014-08-26 04:47:10 AM
I'd say this had more to do with the unions fighting over members and promising bigger and bigger things! They riled up the crowds and egged them on to the point where they thought they could get away with rioting, ultimately attacking police and getting smoked in the process.
Mark Van Niekerk 2014-08-26 05:03:50 AM
R12,500 is peanuts. They are worth twice that.
mlindos 2014-08-26 05:11:15 AM
Well Lonmin it's either you have a Social Responsibility Program or not. I don't understand what's this "preparation time" you need unless to generate excuses as to why you don't do any CSR
Michael Kleber 2014-08-26 05:33:33 AM
Lonmin pays tax a lot no doubt , so where does one draw the line , is a company now responsible for housing it's staff ? Onto the tax issue , a compNy pays tax which should be used for the people how many billions is lost through corruption and wastage by this govt , not to mention nkandla , cars for ministers , mec's , blue light convoys the list is endless
Sokhela Sakhile 2014-08-26 05:57:37 AM
"VIVA CIC of the EFF VIVA"!!!This is why the government need to nationalize mines cos these privately owned, especially foreign owned mines have a tendency of exploiting africans as they put profits before people meanwhile africans should be sharing the fruits of their mineral wealth. Lonmin said they are going to retrench 5700 employees so that they can restore profits after the wage strikes I bet most if not all of them are black maybe only 100 are other races who are supervisors or something ,its that easy to retrench when its a black men's job on the line. The ANC government is failing to look after the masses who vote for them but they can look after the minorities when it comes to these issues that's why Sello Malema says "why is the freedom charter in shelves ?" I have the answer for that its because the political leaders are involed in the sharing of nation's mineral wealth with the minorities and foreigners (western[Europe & US] and earstern[China]).
Archie Dempster 2014-08-26 06:09:56 AM
We mustn't forget that the government is the Responsible for the social needs of the people not a company but can be engaged in a programme with the company
Archie Dempster 2014-08-26 06:12:47 AM
All this costs money and where governments take over the safety and salaries become a lot lower
Sihle Nyamezela Wethu Motaung 2014-08-26 06:21:42 AM
Joseph Mathunjwa and Malema p