S African gov't pays more attention to inferior mine safety

16:02, July 15, 2010      

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The South Africa government will focus on inferior safety measures from mine operators, South Africa's mineral resources minister Susan Shabangu said on Wednesday.

Speaking at a memorial service for five Aquarius Platinum employees who died last week in a mining accident in Rustenburg in South Africa's North West province, Shabangu said those unable to mine safely should not be mining at all.

According to a statement from the South African mineral resources ministry, she said profits must be balanced with the interests of the workers.

Shareholders as well as chief executives had to take responsibility for mine health and safety, the South African Press Association (SAPA) quoted her as saying.

"The shareholders, those who benefit from the profits, must account for what is happening at their mines," she said.

She warned that the South African government would "act firmly" against those who placed mineworkers' lives at risk.

"I want to appeal to both management and workers to ensure that safety standards are improved and that everyone complies."

According to SAPA, she urged South African mine health and safety inspectors to fast-track investigations into mining accidents.

Source: Xinhua


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