More on the deplorable wages for mine workers in Africa. Here below is a repeat of a full report on the killing of Chinese mine supervisors in Zambia. Let us face it, Chinese colonialism is taking over and resuscitating European African colonialism. Why are those African incapable of resisting the lure of exploiters and over-lords?
I submit it is their traditional culture: the big man rules. Makes no difference if he is a fat black man of the same tribe, or an effete British Lord, or a small, obtuse Chinaman. Them plebs like strong chiefs–the gods grant the chief the favors and this is good for the tribe.
The report below tells of incredibly wages. Damn me. I spend more every week on indulgences than those poor hard-workers earn in a month. I like and enjoy my indulgences, but somehow it is hard to reconcile the expense with a full month of work.
Today from Amazon.com I ordered four Donizetti operas I have not hitherto seen. For DVDs plus postage, plus Canada import tax and the bill is over $200. That is more than most miners earn in a month on Chinese mines in Zambia.
Come on guys & gals. Desist from all this blather about sustainability and responsible mining. Let us debate the real issue: how can we pay Africans a pittance while paying white Anglo-Saxons a fortune?
Let us ask and answer these questions:
- Is reality, i.e., productivity & education & skill, the reason for the incredible divergence of wages?
- Is this blatant racialism–with the British and Chinese equally guilty?
- Are the Africans congenitally disposed to admire the tribal chief (whatever his color or nationality)?
- Are Malema and Mugabe the inevitable result of African tribalism?
- Are Zuma and the ANC a mere replacement of Afrikaners and their Dutch-derived superior prejudices?
- As my father postulated: are tribalism, socialism, communism, and failure endemic to Africa. If you do not like it fuck off.
It is late in Santiago, Chile. All this is far away. None of it is of any significance to me. Whatever the truth, it won’t affect me. I do not invest in Africa. It is a hell hole and way beyond my comprehension, understanding, or risk tolerance. Yet as a Victorian Liberal, I cannot but despair, pull my hair out, and write about it in the hope that my stoking of controversy will lead to the betterment of the human condition.
Here is the report that prompted this diatribe:
Zambian miners attacked two Chinese supervisors on Saturday, killing one and seriously wounding another, in a wage dispute at the Chinese-owned Collum Coal Mine located in the Southern Province’s Sinazongwe district.
50-year-old Wu Shengzai is said to have been killed when rioting miners pushed a mining trolley truck over him in an underground shaft.
According to Reuters:
Workers at the Collum mine, situated 325km (200 miles) south of the capital, attacked the Chinese men demanding wage rises in line with those stipulated by the government in July.
Zambia last month raised minimum wages to 522,000 kwacha ($110) for maids and household servants, and to 1.1 million kwacha ($220) for shop workers without unions.
“We are yet to establish the exact circumstances but the report I have is that one Chinese was killed and another injured as the workers demanded the new minimum wage,” [labor minister Fackson Shamenda] told Reuters on Sunday.
Different numbers have been offered by the media as to how much salaries fell short of the new minimum wage targets. According to the South African Broadcasting Corporation, the coal miners were paid about $80 a month, and according to the Wall Street Journal, they were getting $150.
According to an article that appears to have just been taken offlineat the website of the Engineering Institution of Zambia (EIZ), the Collum mine was recently fined 720 million Zambian kwacha (US$146,000) for illegal operation:
[EIZ president Eng Bernard Chiwala] said the penalty slapped on the mine was arrived at after EIZ inspectors discovered that the mine and its four subsidiaries were not registered with the institution….
“In our quest to regulate the practice of engineering, on June 14th, 2012, EIZ commissioned inspectors to carry out unannounced inspections on Collum Coal Mine located in Sinazeze, Sinazongwe District, it was discovered that all of the four mines of Collum Coal are not registered as per requirement of the Act and therefore have been operating illegally,” he said.
He said none of 489 local employees including 49 Chinese Nationals doing engineering works are registered with EIZ.