Most gold miners accept revised offer

2013-09-06 15:52

Most gold mine workers have accepted a revised offer by employers, the National Union of Mineworkers has said.

“All our members, except for those at Harmony mines in the Free State and the Northern Cape, accepted the revised offer,” NUM spokesperson Lesiba Seshoka said today.

“Members accepted an eight percent wage increase for category four and five workers, including rock drill operators. They were satisfied with the figures,” Seshoka said.

“Category six to eight workers accepted a seven percent basic wage deal increase.”

He said union leaders would continue engaging with miners who had not accepted the deal.

“There are no guarantees whether the members that have not accepted will agree to this offer, it’s a wait-and-see game.”

On Wednesday, NUM-affiliated workers at Evander Gold and Village Main Reef agreed to a similar deal.

The Chamber of Mines announced those miners accepted an eight percent increase in basic wages for category four and five employees.

“A 7.5% increase in basic wages for category six to eight employees, [including] miners, artisans, and officials,” the chamber’s chief negotiator Elize Strydom had said.

NUM had demanded increases of R2?300 for surface workers, and R3?000 for underground workers, which equated to a 49% wage increase and a 60 % wage increase, respectively.

The Chamber of Mines, representing gold producers, had initially offered a 6.5% increase.

At the start of the strike on Tuesday most gold mines were severely affected.

Gold producers’ representative spokeswoman Charmane Russell said less than 20% of the work force arrived for shifts.

After a revised offer was presented to some workers, Sibanye Gold reported production at its Kloof and Driefontein mines resumed yesterday at the start of the night shift.

“Sibanye Gold is now operating at over 80% of its planned capacity. Engagement with NUM continues to be positive,” Sibanye spokesperson James Wellsted said in a statement.

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