Amcu fights for recognition

The fledgling union is not just at odds with the National Union of Mineworkers - it is up against the entire state machinery.

The new kid on the mining block, the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu), has discovered how lonely it can be out there in the real world with no political power.

As a union that is essentially still under construction, but one that has encroached massively on the terrain of the established National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) by eating into the latter's membership base, Amcu has had its resolve to make a peace plan work in the industry tested in recent weeks.

The framework for peace and stability, as the plan is known, is supposed to bring the volatile mining industry, especially on the platinum belt, back to normality after a number of violent strikes last year, including the Marikana massacre, in which 34 people were shot dead by the police in August.

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