A 4pm ultimatum set by Gold Fields for staff to return to work passed without action from the striking miners.

The firm has already sacked 1500 workers at another of its mine on October 18, and is now working through appeals.

“All 8500 people who were on strike did not come back. They did not return to work, so we have issued dismissal letters to all of them,” Gold Fields spokesman, Sven Lunsche, told AFP.

The sackings come during a troubling period in South Africa’s mining industry.

Wildcat strikes have been staged across the mining industry over pay and conditions.

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