Johannesburg - Rock drill operators at two other platinum mines are now also demanding salary hikes, like their counterparts at the violence-hit Lonmin mine in Rustenburg, according to a report on Wednesday.

Business Day reported that workers at Anglo American Platinum's (Amplats) Thembelani mine near Rustenburg had given management until Friday to respond to their demands.

Rock drillers at Royal Bafokeng's BRPM mine were also demanding a R12,500 monthly salary.

“There are indications Amcu 1/8Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union 3/8 might want to organise at our operations, which management is not against Ä provided it is done by the rules and with the utmost discipline,” Royal Bafokeng Platinum CE Steve Phiri told the newspaper.

Police opened fire while trying to disperse protesting workers gathered on a hill near the mine on Thursday, killing 34 of them and wounding 78.

The protests were believed to be linked to rivalry between the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) and the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) over recognition agreements at the mine. Workers also wanted higher wages..

Rock drill operators at Lonmin said they were demanding a R12,500 monthly salary, but Lonmin had insisted that it had not received any formal memorandum of demand from the workers.

Lonmin told Sapa that rock drill operators earned R10,000 per month without bonuses and over R11,000 including bonuses. - Sapa