BRITS – Hundreds of unemployed people have gathered at the Brits sports ground in the North West province, ahead of a march to mining companies in the area to demand jobs.
Provincial chairperson of the Village, Township and Small Dorpies (VTSD) Chamber of Commerce in North West, Robert Ngwenya, said they wanted the mines to employ people.
"We cannot leave this guys, exploiting our people, now that there are more foreigners working in our mines. We are saying let's start locally..." he said.
"What we want to achieve is that, number one, we want people to be employed, number two, equal opportunities in the mines, we are not going to compromise on that. Either you give us the 30 percent and give us part of the shafts that we want in these mines because we are tired of being given small things and we are told they are empowering us. What we need is what is in the mining charter and they must implement that."
Ngwenya said if these demands were not implemented he was not sure what was going to happen.
The group, bused in from different areas of Madibeng municipality, were expected to march to five mining companies, including Lonmin in Marikana.
In Majakaneng, south of Brits, people did not go to work and schools did not open, while schools with boarding facilities in Hartbeespoort Dam called parents to fetch their children on Tuesday due to the protest. Elsewhere, in Maboloka, north of Brits, roads were barricaded with burning objects.
A high contingency of public order police have been deployed to monitor the march, with two water cannons on standby and a police helicopter hovering overhead.