South African miners win small pay rise

The Chamber of Mines announced yesterday that it had agreed with gold-mining companies and the National Union of Mineworkers to raise miners' monthly salaries by up to R500 (£35).

The Chamber, representing mine owners, said that the rises are on top of the eight to 10 per cent pay increases that mineworkers were awarded in July, weeks before wildcat strikes hit platinum and gold mines. The rises fall far short of what most strikers are demanding: R16,000 a month. Most earn about R4,000.

The National Union of Mineworkers is reviled by miners who say it is too close to mine owners.