Lonmin "War" a Symptom of Government Apathy

Article Published:Sep 3

The recent"battle of Lonmin" certainly has not come as a surprise to me, especially when I look at the warning signs that started to flicker back in 2004. 

It has been said time and time again, that the general lack of visible leadership and direction on major issues has become synonymous with the ANC lead government. The complete disregard for the laws of our country and the blatant lawlessness witnessed at Marikana has a lot to do with the absence of government, and there can be no denying this. 

To my mind, the increase of violence and vandalism during public service strikes and service delivery protests since 2004, is burning evidence of a country disenchanted with its lack of leadership. This has led to disappointment in the government that loosely throws out promises of a brighter future for all. 

According to the Institute of Security Studies, the number of crowd management incidents in 2011/2012 period, escalated by a whopping 38% to 11033 incidents. The number of crowd violence incidents rose by more than 75% to 1091 cases according to the South African Police Service. 

There can be no ignoring that it appears that the unrest incidents are not only on the rise but are becoming far more violent. 

The reality is that protest marches and gatherings have now become the place for public displays of anger and resentment towards government and businesses alike. These are being fuelled by opportunistic outbursts by individuals, such as Julius Malema. 

Companies now need to take responsibility for the safety of their employees and protection of property into their own hands. No longer can the police be expected to assist during times of labour unrest. 

Adequate contingency planning is now needed along with a detailed business continuity plan devised for immediate implementation when these incidents start to raise their heads. 

For more information on our strike assistance and protection services please contact my office on 011 824 0334 or email me on saint@intrigue.co.za

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