The Portfolio Committee on Mineral Resources and Energy says the safety and health of mineworkers should be made more of a priority by the sector.

This after another miner died at the Kusasalethu Operation of Harmony Gold mine in Gauteng’s West Rand.

According to the committee, this brings the total mine related fatalities in the country to five in the past 11 days alone.

Committee chairperson Sahlulele Luzipo expressed condolences to the family of the miners.

“News of this nature is always regrettable because as far as the committee is concerned, the health and safety of mine workers should be a priority in all mining operations.

“We are worried that fatalities in the mining sector continue to increase on the one hand, while on the other hand, the country is battling with the COVID-19 pandemic,” Luzipo said.

Luzipho said the committee “should make time in its 2022 first quarter programme” for a briefing by the Mining Health and Safety Council on the number of mining fatalities in 2021, and to get clarity on the Mine Health and Safety Amendment Bill.

Last week, the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy, the Minerals Council of South Africa and other industry stakeholders committed to the attainment of zero fatalities in mines.

This after deaths in the mining industry continued to rise from 51 in 2019; 48 in 2020 to 69 this year.

Source: South African Government News Agency

News Reporter