Amcu brings festive cheer to Lily Mine’s hopeless

The donation was a collaborative effort between the union and the Siyakhula Sonke Empowerment Corporation (SSC) group, which reportedly agreed to acquire Vantage’s shares in Lily Mine.

When the mine collapsed on February 5, 2016, families were put back in the cruel grasp of poverty.

According to France Vikizitha Mkhabela, regional organiser of Amcu in the Lowveld, it stepped in and provided much-needed relief by delivering more than 500 food parcels to former employees.

Read More: Lily Mine fails to pay 900 workers their salaries

SSC CEO, Fred Arendse was at the mine to address the community.

The parcels consisted of maize meal, sugar, tea bags, soup powder, salt, tinned baked beans and fish, mixed chicken portions, snacks and sweets.

The workers welcomed it with joy and cooperated when the parcels were being handed out.
They even stepped in to assist in the distribution process.

Sibusiso Mashele, who was the breadwinner before the mine collapsed, expressed his delight, stating that this gave him hope and that his family would have something to eat over the festive season.

Another worker, Sipho Nkosi said he was devastated to be left without a job and that it has been difficult to put food on the table.

“But Amcu has been very supportive and lived up to its name of always making a difference in people’s lives,” said Nkosi.

Also Read: Lily Mine fails to pay 900 workers their salaries

Mkhabela said Amcu believes that the struggle to fight injustice against workers doesn’t just happen at protests or in boardrooms.

Mkhabela said the quest for truth and justice must also be felt in the communities that are most affected when mines shut down and breadwinners lose income.

“Today we stayed true to our founding principle of making a difference when more than 500 food parcels were distributed. This, the union says, is its way of standing in solidarity with workers and families that have been put back in the tight grip of poverty by the closing down of Lily Mine in 2016,” said Mkhabela.

Richard Nkosi

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