AngloGold ‘won’t pull a Marikana’

2012-10-02 06:38

AngloGold Ashanti will not meet its illegally striking workers’ demands outside the formal bargaining structure as Lonmin did, the company has said.

Yesterday CEO Mark Cutifini said giving into the striking workers’ demands would only lead to job losses in the future.

“I have no doubt that the implications for those companies that have had to agree to increase wage demands will be job losses. Absolutely, ... no doubt,” he told reporters at the company’s head office in Johannesburg.

“We understand what a Lonmin decision would mean for us as a business ... It would mean job losses.”

In August, a six-week-long illegal strike by Lonmin mine workers in Marikana, Rustenburg, ended with workers and the mine signing an agreement in favour of the workers’ demands.

According to the agreement, the lowest underground worker would earn R9 611 from R8 164, a winch operator R9 883 from R8 931, a rock drill operator R11 078 from R9 063 and a production team leader R13 022 from R11 818.

A once-off R2 000 bonus was given to the workers as soon as they returned to work after the “no work, no pay” strike.

The mineworkers had refused to return to work until management agreed to a R12 500 wage demand.

Cutifani said the closure of a developmental project at Lonmin’s Marikana mine was a sure sign of things to come.

“We’ve already seen one closure of a development project at Lonmin with the K4 shaft,” he said.

“When you start closing down development projects, what does that say about your future?”

Cutifani said AngloGold Ashanti would not use the same strategy as Lonmin, even though 24 000 of its mine workers were on an unprotected strike.

Workers at the operations at its West Wits and Vaal River regions joined those at Kopanong, who embarked on an unprotected strike on September 20.

Currently operations at all gold producing mines had stopped.

Since the strike started, no formal demands had been made to management, but yesterday Cutifani said it had learnt, through different sources from “unrecognised” organisations, that the striking workers were demanding more money.

“If the current unprotected strike continues, it compounds the potential likelihood of a premature downsizing of AngloGold Ashanti’s South African operations.”

He said where downsizing and closures occurred, the mine was unlikely to re-open the shafts because of the associated costs.

Cutifani urged striking workers to return to work so a sustainable solution for all could be reached.

“We must be very clear in our message to all striking employees that if people return to work and engage in constructive discussions, we will find a pathway to a sustainable and shared future,” he said.


Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
/Sport

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.