So. Africa: Ex-miners suffering lung disease file class action lawsuit against more than 30 gold companies

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Article
28 December 2012

Ex-miners seek silicosis class action vs. South African firms

Author: Reuters

A South African lawyer has moved to file a class action suit against more than 30 gold firms on behalf of 17,000 former miners who say they contracted the debilitating lung disease silicosis due to negligence in health and safety. The companies include…AngloGold Ashanti,…Gold Fields and Harmony Gold. Also named is Anglo American's South African unit…African Rainbow Minerals, one of the companies named, said it was "too soon to discuss the outcome of the matter as none of the merits of the matter has yet been established, let alone tested in court". An Anglo American spokesman said, "We are aware of the case, but Anglo American has not yet been served, so it would not be appropriate to comment any further." AngloGold Ashanti…said…[it] "works to prevent future incidences of occupational lung disease…The health and safety of AngloGold Ashanti employees is central to how we run our business."…Officials from Gold Fields, Harmony and some of the other companies named were not immediately available for comment.

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Article
28 December 2012

Lawyer files SA silicosis class action suit for 17,000 gold miners

Author: Ed Stoddard & Sherilee Lakmidas, Business Day Live [So. Africa]

A South African lawyer has moved to file a class action suit against over 30 gold companies on behalf of 17,000 former miners who say they contracted silicosis, a debilitating lung disease, due to negligence in health and safety. The companies include third-largest global bullion producer AngloGold Ashanti, fourth-largest Gold Fields and Harmony Gold. Also named is Anglo American’s South African unit, which owned gold assets in the past but no longer produces the metal. Attorney Richard Spoor said on Friday he had filed last week for class certification for an action for damages in the South Gauteng High Court in Johannesburg.

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Article
26 December 2012

S African gold miners gun for mining firms

Author: Ilham Rawoot, Al Jazeera

Four thousand former gold mine workers have filed affidavits in the High Court of South Africa, launching three simultaneous lawsuits against mining giants Anglogold Ashanti, Goldfields and Harmony Gold. The miners, who are all ill with lung disease they contracted while working underground, are suing the mining firms for damages, which are expected to run into billions of rands (millions of US dollars)…Alan Fine, a spokesperson for AngloGold Ashanti, says…while the statutory compensation scheme needs to be improved, the company has established, along with other gold-mining firms, a project designed to assist former miners to be diagnosed and receive assistance in making claims. Harmony Gold and Goldfield opted not to comment.

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Article
21 December 2012

[PDF] Gold Mine Workers with Silicosis File Motion for Class Action [So. Africa]

Author: Richard Spoor Inc., Attorneys

South Africa human rights lawyer Richard Spoor filed an application for class certification of an action for damages in the South Gauteng High Court on behalf of tens of thousands of current and former gold mine workers, as well as dependents of deceased workers, who contracted silicosis as a result of their work in South African gold mines… he respondents include Harmony Gold Mining Company Limited, Avgold Limited, AngloGold Ashanti Limited, Gold Fields Limited, Village Main Reef Limited, Simmer and Jack Mines Limited, DRDGold Limited, ERPM Limited, Anglo American South Africa Limited, African Rainbow Minerals, Randgold and Exploration Company Limited, JCI Limited and their subsidiaries.

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