Lonmin appoints acting chief executive

Simon Scott, Lonmin
Image caption Simon Scott will take over "for the time being" at Lonmin, the world's third largest platinum producer

Platinum miner Lonmin, grappling with the fallout from a violent strike in South Africa that left 44 people dead, has named a temporary chief executive.

Chief financial officer Simon Scott will take over from Ian Farmer, who has begun treatment for an unspecified illness, the company said.

It added Mr Farmer would not return to work full-time for "some months".

One of the first things Mr Scott will have to deal with is an investigation into the deaths at the Marikana mine.

The Lonmin-owned platinum mine has been at the centre of a violent pay dispute, exacerbated by tensions between two rival trade unions.

On 16 August, 34 people were killed and at least 78 injured after police opened fire on striking miners, marking one of the bloodiest police operations since apartheid.

Violence had already killed 10 people, including two police officers, since the strike had begun a week earlier.

In a statement announcing the management update, Lonmin said: "Ian Farmer, the chief executive officer of Lonmin Plc, has commenced a course of treatment and it will be some months before he is able to return to work full-time.

"In light of this, the board of Lonmin has today appointed Simon Scott, the chief financial officer, as acting chief executive officer for the time being."

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