NUM wants Lesotho to become SA's 10th province
The National Union of Mineworkers has called on Lesotho to be integrated into South Africa.
NUM general secretary Frans Baleni said yesterday the integration of Lesotho into South Africa was a long-standing policy position of the trade union.
He said the kingdom could be a 10th province of South Africa.
"In reality, Lesotho is in the Free State and so it can be an extension of the Free State, or the 10th province," Baleni said.
The mountainous kingdom, which is surrounded by South Africa, is currently engulfed in political turmoil.
Lesotho's political parties hold sharply different views on how to resolve the political crisis. The country's parliament was suspended after a recent coup attempt.
President Jacob Zuma reportedly failed to convince the government's coalition partners to agree on a resolution plan during his visit to the capital, Maseru, this week.
Lesotho's economy depends heavily on South Africa.
This country's mining industry draws a large part of its labour force from Lesotho.
"The boundaries of Lesotho were due to wars of land dispossession which were not satisfactorily resolved," Baleni said.
"The people of Lesotho were deprived of their land and freedom, and democratic South Africa will resolve that."