The world's largest gold mine agreed yesterday to reinstate most of the 14,500 black miners fired over the weekend for holding an illegal strike, the miners' union said.
Agreement to rehire the miners came during a meeting at Vaal Reefs Gold Mine between representatives of the mine owner, Anglo American Corp., and the National Union of Mineworkers, a three-year-old black union, The Associated Press reported.
"The procedure of reemployment will be discussed in further meetings between the union and Anglo American," a union spokesman said.
Anglo American said the meeting resulted in an agreement by the mine to "give preferential consideration to employing previous employes of the mine."
The company had said earlier it would look favorably on applications for reinstatement by fired employes at the mine, 95 miles west of Johannesburg.
The union, which claims about 100,000 members among the country's 500,000 black miners, planned to meet today with Anglovaal Ltd., the owner of Hartebeestfontein mine, where 3,000 black miners were dismissed for taking part in an illegal strike last week.
Overnight, two explosions of unknown origin shattered windows at offices of Anglo American and Anglovaal. There were no injuries, police said.