Compensation paid to families of Lily Mine tragedy
Lump-sum compensation pay-outs have been made to the families of mineworkers Pretty Nkambule‚ Solomon Nyerende and Yvonne Mnisi, who were killed in a sinkhole tragedy at Lily Mine in Mpumalanga in February last year.
Confirmation of the pay-outs was made by union federation Cosatu on Wednesday‚ which said it was "encouraged and delighted to see some positive developments taking place regarding the resolution of challenges facing workers at Lily Mine".
The families of the deceased miners have been paid R200‚000 each. An amount of R10‚000 each has been paid so far to the 75 injured miners, who were promised a payment of R50‚000 each. Cosatu said it would "work to support the fund-raising efforts" so that those workers receive the additional R40‚000.
The mine has been paying the salaries of the three deceased miners to the families since the accident, who are also receiving grants from the government.
The three workers were killed when the lamp room they were in plummeted into the belly of the mine as a result of a sinkhole which formed on February 5 last year. Efforts to recover their bodies have faced numerous delays‚ due to the complexity of the operation as well as cost. The mine‚ which required an injection of funding to operate‚ was closed after the tragedy
In March this year‚ the Sowetan reported that Mpumalanga premier David Mabuza visited the area and pledged to build 1‚000 Reconstruction and Development Programme houses for the community of Louieville‚ which is adjacent to Lily Mine.
He said the construction of the houses should also create employment for the locals‚ whose job prospects have worsened following the mine’s closure. There are about 6‚000 families living in the area. The completion of the 1‚000 houses is planned for 2019.