NUM optimistic strike decision will soon be reached

2013-09-06 11:00

The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) remains optimistic consultations with workers over a revised offer will be concluded today.

“We are still consulting with workers on the new offer ... talks are ongoing with them,” NUM spokesperson Lesiba Seshoka said.

The union’s strike committee took the Chamber of Mines’ offer to its striking members for consideration yesterday.

Seshoka confirmed that the chamber had presented an offer worth the union’s consideration, though he did not elaborate on the new details.

He could not say if the figures were close to the unions’ demands.

“I’m unable to say if it is close or far to what we demanded. The strike committee meeting is under way to evaluate it and decide if we take it to the members or reject it outright,” Seshoka had said.

The gold producers’ spokesperson Charmane Russell confirmed that such an offer was presented to the union but remained tight-lipped on what changes were made.

Russell said “discussions were at a delicate stage”.

Seshoka lauded the revision as an indication that talks between the union and employers were taking place in good faith.

On Wednesday, gold producers Evander Gold and Village Main Reef reached agreement with the NUM and Uasa.

“The settlements reached by these companies are (an) 8% increase in basic wages for category four and five employees, including rock-drill operators.

“(There is) 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 said.

Seshoka said the agreements were mine-specific and would not affect the dynamics of the strike action.

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