News24

Police keep eye on Amplats miners

2012-11-10 11:52

Rustenburg - Hundreds of striking Anglo American Platinum (Amplats) workers were gathered at a mass rally at the Olympia Park Stadium in Rustenburg on Saturday Morning.

The crowd was singing and dancing as police in Nyalas and vans kept watch over proceedings. A police helicopter was circling overhead.

The miners would receive feedback on wage negotiations after Amplats management re-opened discussions on miners returning to work on Friday.

The workers said they would not oppose returning to work if their salary demands were met.

"We are looking for money. If they give us what we need, we can go back to work," said Simon Gqaza, an employee at Amplats for the last three years.

"I need R16 000. If they give me that money that I'm looking for I will go back to work anytime."

Amplats said in a statement on Friday: "The outcome of these discussions is that management has revised the initial offer to a once-off allowance of R4 500 [gross of tax] to be paid to each qualifying employee.

"[This was] comprising a R2 000 loyalty or hardship allowance and a R2 500 safe start-up allowance to be paid two weeks after employees have returned to work and have commenced actual work."

The mining company also agreed to re-opening wage negotiations early.

Deadline

However, any agreement reached would only be introduced in July next year, in line with the current wage negotiation cycle.

"If the offer is accepted, the understanding is that employees would return to work on Monday, 12 November 2012, after which date the offer will lapse," Amplats said.

Amplats fired 12 000 workers after they failed to appear for a disciplinary hearing. They had been on a wildcat strike since 12 September, demanding to be paid a minimum of R16 000 a month.

The company then made the workers a re-instatement offer, which was not accepted.

Chris Griffith, Amplats chief executive, said the company had previously stated that its operations were under tremendous economic pressure which was being exacerbated by the strike.

"The return to work offer that has been agreed with the unions and the strike committee will require almost R220m to fund," he said.

"The workers' current demand of a salary increase of R4 500 per month would cost approximately R2.6bn, an amount that is clearly not affordable in a year when the company is experiencing such economic challenges."

Griffith said Amplats had gone to great lengths to get workers to return to work, but if they did not accept the offer Amplats would have no option but to adhere to the dismissals.

Comments
  • glen.e.huysamer - 2012-11-10 11:59

    What eye? The left or the right?

  • gavin.lott.9 - 2012-11-10 12:00

    Only R 16,000? yeah right!

      michael.heys.3 - 2012-11-10 12:26

      Alot of people with brains don't actually earn that!!

  • goeie.jaarling - 2012-11-10 12:09

    Well I need R160K/month to pay for all the increases caused by ANC incompetence and corruption....What these cave dwellers don't understand is that their skills is a dime a dozen...your salary is the price someone is willing to pay for your skills, so get a proper education and skills and you will be worth far more than R16K/month....What do you say...you haven't got the potential to be educated and to acquire decent skills, then be thankful for the R4K and FO back to your manual labor job.

  • gavin.lott.9 - 2012-11-10 12:10

    Actually Amplats there is a township down the road from me which thousands of them need & want work. Fire the strikers & when the new guys start striking again,which they will, take the old ones back...& just repeat cycle.

  • brent.goldwyer - 2012-11-10 12:34

    Please use a Gattling gun this time and don't shoot into the gound

  • Strikeback - 2012-11-10 12:36

    Strikeback herewith formally states their loyalty to Amplats. Our loyalty bonus can be paid into our bank account. If this was not so sad, we would have made more comic remarks, but this is really not the way to deal with mutiny. Rewarding people who undermine your business and then calling it a "loyalty bonus" is misleading at best. Respect your own decisions and stay with the dismissal. Otherwise this will be added to your list of failed bargaining tools. If your wife hits you in public, devorce her and get a new one! www.strikeback.co.za

  • joe.whiteman.9 - 2012-11-10 12:47

    Who do these "people" think they are? Cant read, cant write but demanding salaries of people with degrees and a lot more grey matter between their ears! If I was the mine I would say stuff them and next please to someone that wants to work !

  • ontlhabanetsesteve.baepile - 2012-11-10 13:26

    At amplats the muti really works cause they became invissible when going to burn a shaft.

  • asdhasgd - 2012-11-10 14:01

    "I need R16 000. If they give me that money that I'm looking for I will go back to work anytime." yeah bro if we were ALL earning 16K we would all be in the mines xD

  • EDBUDDIE - 2012-11-10 15:26

    U are tighy

  • sonia.swarts - 2012-11-10 19:20

    U guys at anglo need to re-open this mine. September to November? Seriously!!! U have obviously become a joke to them and they have u by the u know what. This country needs the money! Now, fire the bunch of them make an example of them so this will never happen again. Get people in that wants to work and get rid of the problems... U can not pay an uneducated person that type of money!!!!! A hand full of u have the power to make this go away.

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