Striking miners demand 'R9 000 or nothing'

2012-02-21 11:17

Rustenburg - Striking Impala Platinum mineworkers gathered at Freedom Park in Rustenburg on Tuesday morning to wait for their leaders to address them.

Men carrying knobkerries and umbrellas sat on the railway line between Freedom Park and the Number 8 shaft.

"We want R9 000 and nothing else," said Amon Moabi, who said he had worked for Implats for over 10 years but was taking home R4 000.

"I cannot survive with the salary, that is why I am on strike. I need a better salary because I am working hard," he said.

Illegal strike

Rockdrillers at the mine embarked on an illegal strike on January 27, refusing to accept they would not get a bonus.

About 5 000 of them were dismissed. They then began protesting, intimidating and assaulting people trying to get to and from work in the township outside Rustenburg.

The rest of the mine's 17 000 workers were dismissed on January 30 for not being at work.

Protesters intensified their action, barricading roads to Freedom Park, stoning cars and looting shops. They also torched a satellite police station in Freedom Park.

Vukile Ndambi, 38, from the Eastern Cape, said he could not survive on his monthly salary because he had to pay for a rented room and send money home to the Eastern Cape.

"After I have paid all my monthly expenses, I have nothing to save and this means I will never afford to pay for my children's tertiary education," he said.

Ndambi said his salary would automatically turn his children into mineworkers because he could not afford a better education for them.

"All I could do was to put my children through school until Grade 12, and then organise a job for them in the mines," he said.

Closed meeting

The workers' leaders went into a closed meeting at 07:00 on Tuesday and were still in talks later in the morning.

A miner was shot dead and at least seven people were injured in overnight violence linked to the dispute, police said on Monday.

This was the second death related to the labour dispute. Last week a man was found dead at a workers' hostel.

Seven people were injured on Sunday night in a clash between police and a group of people trying to damage a mine shaft.

The Independent Complaints Directorate said it would establish where the live ammunition came from because the police were under orders not to use bullets - rubber or otherwise - for crowd control.

The mine has secured an interdict to protect staff and property.

Implats said it had lost production of 60 000 troy ounces (1 866kg) since the start of the strike.

- Are you there? Send us your eyewitness accounts and photos.

  • Bardy - 2012-02-21 11:22

    WTF? R9000 for being a miner??? Are you serious??? We live in South Africa FFS! You must be crazy to expect that much...

      Marion - 2012-02-21 11:32

      They also get shift allowances, overtime etc., That is his nett salary. Who knows what deductions come off for medical aid, provident fund, micro loans (yebo, micro loans) before that R4000 is arrived at.

      Max - 2012-02-21 11:38

      Give them the second option...NOTHING

      FlowingRivers - 2012-02-21 11:45

      THEY SHUD ALL PROFIT SHARE..........Feenish and Klaar!

      Poloyatonki - 2012-02-21 11:54

      Bardy... Ask a mine boss if he can live with R4000 a month...

      richard.hipkin - 2012-02-21 11:58

      @Stinkypony, ask a miner if he has a degree in mining.

      Nitro - 2012-02-21 12:02

      oh look " drol in die drinkwater" aka flowingriver also joined us. BTW im free next week for some english spelling classes

      Irene - 2012-02-21 12:02

      Polyatonki ~ Maybe if they spent their time at school studying instead of protesting, they might have been able to study and wouldn't be labourers. If a labourer expects R9k a month, what about those who have spent years studying!

      Johan - 2012-02-21 12:23

      And how much is the mine's profit? FFS!! Greed!!

      Bardy - 2012-02-21 12:30

      @ Mike - I never said that they should not get more money, but they are expecting WAY to much! Some learnt professionals don't even get R9000 a month! These miners are really greedy and it looks to me like they are trying to take advantage. BTW. I can tell you now that they will not get this right!

      David - 2012-02-21 12:32

      Bardy, can you and all those who agree with you, live on R4500 a month. Not a chance. Now look at R9000 then go and do some research and see how much even the basics cost today. Not sure what you do for a living, but a miner sure works for his money -- and takes risks. Do you?

      Merven - 2012-02-21 12:37

      I for sure won't work under ground for R4000. Than being said, no one force them to work there, with our level of unemployment, I'll say fire them. There's thousands that will fill their positions in no time.

      Nosiphom - 2012-02-21 13:07

      @FlowingRivers - using which formula?

      nolan.brunsdon - 2012-02-21 13:19

      so what you people are saying is that you should be paid according to risk and labor intensity? so will you take the R4K for sitting in a office and give the miner your pay?

      Mattewis - 2012-02-21 14:08

      @Poloyatonki It's the commercial world of supply & demand, my friend! For every 10000 available workers who bring nothing more than raw muscle power to the table, there may be only a single well trained/experienced/responsible mine boss! R9000 is more than what many people with 10x the education level and 100x the work ethic, have to be satisfied to earn. They don't strike and they work overtime for NO additional income, just so the company they work for, can survive! I also say give them the second option and tell them to F/O, same as with the Gautrain bus drivers who strike every second week!

      Activity Bookings - 2012-02-21 14:19

      This is unfortunately the law of the world, there will be poor peasants and rich masters. If the poor peasant want to get away from slavery, stand up and start your own thing, become the master and get peasants. The wealth cannot be distributed equally, else the lazy would get more lazy and the hard workers will be over worked doing what the lazy is supposed to be doing and join the club of the lazy.

  • Marion - 2012-02-21 11:30

    I sympathise with anyone who has to survive on R4000 a month however, how many children does the guy mentioned in the article have. One, two, ten, sixteen? I recall someone crying about their pay a couple of years back 'cos he couldn't afford to support his 9 children. No one tells anyone to go out and have a soccer team sized family. That is a personal choice. Why should any company/government pay you according to your home situation (our president is a case in point) rather than your job situation?

      richard.hipkin - 2012-02-21 11:34

      You right, the problem is as a bread winner you not only have to provide for your family but your extended family as well - gran, aunty and their children. it is why many black families cannot get by.

      Sharon - 2012-02-21 12:06

      Why don't they go and find jobs that pay the salary they demand? When they were employed, the mine offered them a salary, and they accepted. Nobody forced them to take the job.

      Sanegran - 2012-02-21 12:09

      No you can't sympathise have you worked in the mines. If all these guys shut down and stop working we all will soon feel the pain.They are providing hard labour and need to be compensated likewise.We all have dreams for our kids and we should not confine our kids to the same hard labour we do to make a living.

      Marion - 2012-02-21 12:21

      In every country in the world people do 'hard labour'... Do they earn top $ Euro etc.?

      Elle-Black - 2012-02-21 12:48

      @ Marion even if you have no kids you cannot survive on 4000,they risk their lives daily to make sure the mine bosses can afford private jets, Maybergs and Bentley

      richard.hipkin - 2012-02-21 13:02

      @Elle, like the Auroa mine bosses?

      Elle-Black - 2012-02-21 13:05

      @ Pointblank yes just like the Aurora mine bosses. (I see were you trying to take this I wont go there)

      ronald.stilianou - 2012-02-21 13:22

      Can you people just stop with the"they risk their lives", I've worked underground far a long time and it is NOT as dangerous as you guys make it out to be. As for the ridiculous demand of an increase of ware will you get that with absolutely NO education & No formal training. That is the exact problem we are trying to eradicate here in SA at the moment. And as Marion said, the size of some of these families is of such a nature that not even 20 000 rand will help. Education is the ONLY way to sort this out.

      richard.hipkin - 2012-02-21 13:26

      @Elle, good, we all know how you can go on...

  • richard.hipkin - 2012-02-21 11:33

    Dude, not even computer engineers get 9000 a month..

      John - 2012-02-21 11:42

      dude - i think you should change companies :)

      timmy.ditsele - 2012-02-21 11:44

      do any of you work in the mining industry?

      richard.hipkin - 2012-02-21 11:50

      @John, not me.. Remember there is a difference between a computer engineer (A+) and a systems/network engineer (CCIE, MCSE) ;)

      Peter - 2012-02-21 11:52

      and some graphic designers :(

      Alan - 2012-02-21 12:21

      Yeah - and this is Africa, where millions and millions of people would do anything to get a job for R4000 per month. Fact is that nobody 'owes' anybody anything, irrespective of background. The world economy is crumbling, yet we still have the "I DEMAND" mentality in SA.WTF? Wake up and smell the roses guys - any job is a priviledge.

      James - 2012-02-21 12:29

      I love how someone with an A+ or MCSE is an engineer all of a sudden. What's next? A plumber calling himself a sanitary engineer? Computer Technician, or network technician is the correct term I believe.

      Merven - 2012-02-21 12:40

      That will make a graphic designer a brand engineer then?

      richard.hipkin - 2012-02-21 12:42

      @James, what does MCSE stand for?

      richard.hipkin - 2012-02-21 12:43

      @James, and what does CCIE stand for?

      James - 2012-02-21 12:58

      @Pointblank, Google is your friend : CCIE = Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert & MCSE = Microsoft Certified System Engineer. So because Microsoft added Engineer at the end, it's valid? You can add engineer to the end of anything to make it sound more impressive, that's my point. Let me ask you this, what's the difference between an aviation engineer and an aviation technician? The one designs aircraft and the other one repairs aircraft. Do you think they both deserve the title engineer? The only, and only way you can consider yourself an engineer is if you've completed an engineering degree, practiced for 2 years as an engineer in training and then you registered with ECSA (or other similar international body) who will in turn provide you with a professional registration number(should they see fit), as an engineer.

      Donald - 2012-02-21 13:09

      @James, I totally agree. Its like referring to a nurse as a doctor. I do disagree with being a member of ECSA though. I was registered with them for a number of years but then withdrew my membership

      Nosiphom - 2012-02-21 13:12

      They are both not "Engineers" Engineers go to Varsity and get an Engineering Degree.

      James - 2012-02-21 13:25

      @Donald, fair enough, and I can certainly understand why. I just used it to illustrate my point, as the engineering counsel of SA, they will not grant you the title of professional engineer with the accreditation discussed.

      richard.hipkin - 2012-02-21 13:35

      Engineer - 1. One who is trained or professionally engaged in a branch of engineering. Depending on the type of Engineering one does not always need a university degree... *sigh*, I truly hope none of you are engineers because I think I just burst your bubble..

      John - 2012-02-21 13:42

      CCIE with 9K salary is the discussion or CCIE as highest Cisco certification? PointBlank...take you discussion somwere else. If you working for Piet Pompie company with 9k salary maybe becouse you work reputation and discipline is too low to get hired somwhere else.

      James - 2012-02-21 13:56

      You know what, why not go for network surgeon or software doctor? If you want to equate an A+ course (done in 15 Saturdays) or a MCSE course (done in 2 and a half months) to an engineering degree of 5 years, go for it. "one does not always need a university degree" <- That one cracks me up. So by your logic, someone that works at Matrix warehouse servicing PCs, and someone else(with a Bsc enginnering degree in computer science) that designs new chipsets for microsoft can both be called engineers? Riiiiiiiiiiiiigggggggggghhhhhhht.

  • Wesley - 2012-02-21 11:33

    Ok, take the nothing then

  • Danie - 2012-02-21 11:35

    Not even a shop clerk in the Us gets that, and very view secretaries or receptionist, office workers and many more get that. WAKE UP there are 2 mil unemployd who can and want to get your job for half of that...

      Duncan Thabiso Mphailane - 2012-02-21 11:47

      And a shop clerk puts their life in danger by doing what exactly? Are you willing to risk your life for R4000 a month?

      Marion - 2012-02-21 11:53

      Don't they get 'danger' pay? Like cops etc., get to my knowledge. These days 'shop clerks' should get danger pay too 'cos they are constantly subjected to traumatising armed robberies.

      Vaaldonkie - 2012-02-21 12:24

      Do you guys know how little a police officer earns? Not to mention security guards.

      Merven - 2012-02-21 12:42

      No one force them to be police officers. Anyway, hundreds of thousands with all the kick backs and bribes.

      J-Man - 2012-02-21 14:11

      I could support them if they would do this like normal people and stop trashing cars, looting shops and burning sh*t in the road.

      Marcel - 2012-02-21 14:22

      Why are their lives in danger, they are constructing the mine, if it collapses its there fault causethey didn't do their job right or they were negligent, so they put their own life in danger.

  • rowan.maulson - 2012-02-21 11:41

    What he has to do with his money is totally irrelevant if you ask me.. If I as a company owner was given an ultimatum of "I want R9000 or nothing"... well bye bye.. I'll take the nothing option and employ someone who is willing to work for the salary that is offered.

      Elle-Black - 2012-02-21 12:52

      @ Rowan you mean you will look for someone who is willing to be exploited?

  • Ross - 2012-02-21 11:43

    Implats have taken a good stand here, they said the miners could reapply for their jobs and were not going to be reinstated, why not just hire new people who are willing to work instead, i understand the mob justice and "if i wont work you cant work either" mentality, but surely some security could be given to the ones willing to work, to stop them losing millions a day?

      Marion - 2012-02-21 11:55

      Sadly in SA striking has become such a national pastime that it is even referred to as 'strike season'...

  • Sika - 2012-02-21 11:44

    That's great, these people are working very hard..their life is in danger for 4k that bull ish.....guys you have my support

      richard.hipkin - 2012-02-21 11:52

      It's amazing how you think this 9000 will just fall out the sky??

      Sika - 2012-02-21 11:54

      This is a multi billion rand industry..these peoples lives are in danger on a daily basis

      richard.hipkin - 2012-02-21 11:56

      @Sika, I too work in one of the most dangerous conditions in the world and I don't get danger pay. What is this nonsense..

      Danie - 2012-02-21 12:09

      So are bus drivrs, police officers, truck drivers (more killed per year than miners in all these proffesions and paid less. More sevurity guards killed, paid less than half that with longer hours. make the sum 5000 workers @9000 = R45 000 000Pm x12 = 540 000 000 per year but there is 17000 R 1 836 000 000 - then it is better to close the mine as it is not proffitable and then everybody are without work starving... Try going for a R1000 more and then you will get public support.

      Sika - 2012-02-21 12:12

      @Marion, can you surive with 4K a month? 4K is nothing these days...Marion do you have any idea of the working conditions in a mine? have some ubuntu please....PoinBlank however you are not taking home 4K to your family right?

      Deon - 2012-02-21 12:14

      We must beware to become another Greece, more than 100% increase will bankrupt the company. Take the R4000 nett pay or leave.

      richard.hipkin - 2012-02-21 12:25

      @Sika, actually up until 2 years ago I was...

      Merven - 2012-02-21 12:46

      'This is a multi billion rand industry..' Sika, do you got any idea what a mine's overheads a month is? Then they must still compete against countries like China where people mines for R50 a month. When you deal with corporate companies you must look at the global environment, not just local.

      Bomb - 2012-02-21 12:52

      Sika......these workers don't pay for water and electricity and pay only minimal school fees. A certain YSKOR mine my father worked on, accommodated the miners all in the then called mining compound. They had their own stores, in which certain commodities such as maize, bread, sugar and oil were sold for cost price, cause the mine subsidized it. We even bought our groceries there as it was cheaper than the shop in town. Apart from this, each mineworker received a food "parcel" every month from the mine, containing your basics, again maize, sugar etc, paid for by the mine. When things changed, the miners started demanding that they be allowed to also stay in town where we stayed and their children be allowed to go to the school in town. The mine said no problem but that the new prospective occupants would have to pay a minimum water, electricity and services fee as well as start paying school fees like everyone else in town. They would also not receive the food parcel anymore every month. Can you guess how many took up the offer????? Very few. Let me tell you, in my experience, R4000-00 is not bad for miners who anyway don't pay water and electricity or their tv licenses and minimal school fees. Im not saying its a decent salary, but their demands are absolutely rediculous. My friend is a "Site Manager" at a service provider company, with 20 staff under him, and is responsible for a monthly turnover of around R350 000-00 and he earns R7 500-00, BEFORE tax.

      Nosiphom - 2012-02-21 13:19

      Right mike, I wouldn't survive one day in amnie, hence I don't work there. These guys are ridiculous, its a market economy and you are paid what you are worth. Fire all the buggers and get guys who are hungry to work. Ask the Gautrain Bus drivers how it feels to be jobless, because of stupid demands.

      Marcel - 2012-02-21 14:26

      how about double up your production in your shift then you can get double pay, or don't you want to work for it.

      Marcel - 2012-02-21 14:27

      @ sika, they were surviving on it before the strike.

  • TBlogger - 2012-02-21 11:44

    I sympathize with people who have to try to survive on so little especially when they have extended families to support. But C'mon, some people who have tertiary degrees don't even earn R9000.. They should be willing to negotiate as well as their employers. Negotiations should be in the best interest of both the employer and employees...

      Danie - 2012-02-21 12:36

      Have friends that are earning R 6500 (recon clerk) and R 8000 (internal account manager)(husband and wife) they survive and have a kid on the way, but both are working, long hours as well I must say 7:30 till 16:30. it is hard but they are working hard and getting experience to one day go up in life...

      Elle-Black - 2012-02-21 13:08

      @ TBlogger now there's a statement I can agree with,negotiations will do the trick no doubt

      Marcel - 2012-02-21 14:31

      yeah negotiate:8% increase its 2% higher then inflation and therefore reasonable

  • Thermophage - 2012-02-21 11:48

    If you guys had any idea how much money was in the mining industry then you would agree that R9 000 a month is not nescessarily too much to ask for. A graduate geologist can earn anywhere from R15 000 to R20 000 on a mine. Miners work in terribly harsh conditions and provide a real skill without which the mine would simply cease operation. Honestly, R4 000 for these guys is totally pathetic and I don't blame them for striking. I certainly wouldn't want to be working in many of the conditions they are forced to work under.

      richard.hipkin - 2012-02-21 11:53

      There is a HUUUUUGE difference between a geologist and a miner... Wow, I laugh that you even try compare the two!!

      Marion - 2012-02-21 11:57

      R4000 nett. Without years of studying. There is skilled labour, unskilled labour etc., in the labour force. I also wouldn't like to work under those conditions, but they accepted the conditions when they accepted the jobs.

      Thermophage - 2012-02-21 11:58

      @ PointBlank - Yes, there is. Did I say there wasn't, my point was that the mining indistry has the cash. These people work in far more dangerous environments than I do as a geologist and provide a skill/service most are unwilling to do because of the danger so that YOU can drive around in your car with its nice catalytic converter/etc. They deserve more than R4 000. Laugh all you want, until you are blue in the face, it just makes you look stupid.

      Thermophage - 2012-02-21 12:01

      And how long do you think it has been since they got an increase? If you are not willing to work in those conditions for the money then you honestly cannot give them sh1t for wanting more money. Yes, theysigned at R4 000 initially, so what?

      richard.hipkin - 2012-02-21 12:12

      You need to differentiate what you mean by "miners", as in all industries you have different levels, i.e. driller, shift boss, foreman, etc.. Saying "miners" deserve R9000 a month is too broad. Which "miners" deserve R9000 a month? The lowest graded miner? If you meaning the lowest graded miner I would say you mad!

      Deon - 2012-02-21 12:21

      They are not forced to work under these conditions and get a yearly increase. This sounds like another unprotected strike and will be lucky to keep theire jobs. R4000 Nett pay is better than no pay.

      Marion - 2012-02-21 12:29

      Thermophage - how long is it since they got an increase, and what was the agreement at the conclusion of that last wage negotiation?

      Alan - 2012-02-21 12:31

      Hmm now Thermophage --- just imagine SA 10 years into the future, when the Chinese Puppetmasters control the mines. Do you think they will pay the equivalent of 9K for unskilled labour, or do you think they will even allow workers to strike? If you do ... think again boet. What SA needs is a mentality change - hard work = growth = benefit for all. Handouts are unsustainable, and SA already has amongst the lowest productivity in the world with unskilled labour. Maybe the Govt should be educating the workforce with the taxpayers money, rather than say doing things like sending 3 jets to the USA for a shopping spree.....???

      Merven - 2012-02-21 12:48

      @Thermophage A mine got like two geologist and 4000 miners. That is the difference. It is easy to pay two people R15000 a month, way different than paying 4000 R9000 a month.

      Nosiphom - 2012-02-21 13:22

      They should not strike, but resign and go work somewhere else! They are not forced to work there, they came and asked for work.

  • SarelJBotha - 2012-02-21 11:51

    Perhaps these guys should also do some extra jobs like many of have done and still do.

  • njdejager - 2012-02-21 11:52

    How is nothing better than R9000??? No sense there.

      Marion - 2012-02-21 12:32

      They were already dismissed so were going to get nothing anyway... what they're effectively saying is give us R9000 or leave us unemployed. They should be re-applying for their jobs instead of toy-toying and assaulting / killing others.

  • roodbol - 2012-02-21 11:52

    With our own company I KNOW how many debt [accounts] they have... I get the calls from the various providers. We pay our guys far above the salaries prescribed by the union and have done so for 22 years. None has left our services yet. But to strike, 'tools down', screaming and destroying the environment has never been the solution. Snce 1994 all these guys can think of is to strike [varsities, colleges, etc. - they don't even turn up for most of the classes!] If you don't like the pay [you received a couple of years now], you should hae quitted long ago. And if their unhappiness is truthfully based on 'too low a salary to live on', then shame on the mine bosses/owners.

  • Dee - 2012-02-21 11:53

    ohk right?? I think they just need to repackage their salaries to include some more benefits like Med aid, Pension etc. But R9K for being a miner is bit ambitious. so this guys are looking for more than 100% increase. "DayDreaming"

  • malcolm - 2012-02-21 11:55

    Quite frankly, R4000 a month is little to come out on if you are a married couple with no children. If you look at what mine owners, and management get paid, the imbalances are huge. The salaries that the workers get paid is not realistic in comparison to the management and shareholders. In South Africa, we need to start getting more realistic about salary standards. The people on the shop floors of most companies in South Africa do not receive fair compensation for their work output in comparison to management. Certainly R9000 in this instance sounds like an excessive demand, however R4000 is simply too little. Perhaps somewhere in between would be more realistic.

      Vaaldonkie - 2012-02-21 12:27

      Let's do an exercise: how would you decide how much to pay the people who work for you?

      Deon - 2012-02-21 12:28

      An increase of R5000 p/m x 22 000 workers = R110 million per month. The mine will be another Grootvlei / Aurora mine within 2 months. Not even the state will be able to afford this. Times or tough in SA, but this possible increase is pure madness.

      Marion - 2012-02-21 12:36

      The answer does not lie in simply increasing the lowest workers pay to unaffordable levels without adjusting elsewhere. Money for massive increases could come from freezing / reducing the exorbitant salaries of senior executives who, in many cases, earn more than the President of the country, even with his massive family.

      timmy.ditsele - 2012-02-21 13:06

      deon obviously you dont work in the mining industry.And all you people dont know what you are talking about.Now if i remember correctly te RDOs were promised an adjustment of 18% together with the miners,the miners were given the 18% adjustment and not the RDO,thats what started the strike.Deon i work in the mining industry and my shaft is using half that money every month to run smoothly and we have no problems like grootvlei/Aurora.

      Nosiphom - 2012-02-21 13:27

      Vaal-Donkie Simple, it depends how many people I can get that can do the job correctly at as little a wage as I want to pay (or as close to the minimum wage as someone is willing to accept!)

  • Stephen - 2012-02-21 11:56

    Perhaps it would be possible to pay miners a decent salary if our politicians and government employees weren't over paying them selves

      Sika - 2012-02-21 12:15

      hey wena, what does the governenment have to do with this? this is a rpivate mine nxa

      richard.hipkin - 2012-02-21 12:26

      @Stephen, I agree with Sika - stay on topic..

      Linda - 2012-02-21 13:38

      The fact that the politicians such obscenely high salaries are always splashed about in the media has led to the miners feeling that they are underpaid. The difference is that to be a politician you have to be related to someone in power - whereas there are literally millions of people willing to become a miner. Its a simple case of supply and demand. You cant demand when there is an oversupply - and its about time that unskilled labourers realised that.

  • roodbol - 2012-02-21 11:56

    .... R9,000 for a miner per month? Serious? Will this include overtime, shift allowances, etc. etc.? And yes, how many dependants do they have to take care of per month? That's another story..... I won't be able to be the breadwinner for only 2 dependants on my salary either! Never mind a house filled with kids, wives and relatives!

  • Sizah - 2012-02-21 11:57

    fair enough R9000 is not a lot of money, but unions needs to first do sum research & then make meaningful demands, say a worker currently earning R4000 u expecting the company to suddenly double that salary??? BS i'm all for better wages but people need to make reasonable demands maybe of time they will be earning that kind of money.... just a thought

      Marion - 2012-02-21 12:45

      They want R9000 gross. That guy gets R4000 nett.

      Merven - 2012-02-21 12:52

      Jip, to suddenly pay R36 million a month salary is much more than R16 million.

  • Christie - 2012-02-21 11:58

    Pay them whatever they are worth. If they are worth 9k them pay them 9k! Please remember that these lads are building someone elses vision and ideals.

  • Thoka - 2012-02-21 11:58

    I quit my job.

  • Tammy - 2012-02-21 12:01

    we all know what is next: break and burn down

      Duncan Thabiso Mphailane - 2012-02-21 12:45

      I've never seen that. There's a company called Staalbeer in Potchefstroom, black people who've been working there for seven years are earning R3500. A white, unskilled/uneducated guy was offered a job to stand at a door and sign slips and he earns R13000.#TrueStory

      richard.hipkin - 2012-02-21 12:56

      Gees the rubbish you spewing Duncan... You should go work for the ANC, you very good at lying.

      Merven - 2012-02-21 13:05

      Any proof Duncan? Or are you just advocating the normal ANC propaganda?

  • Brad.Kopping - 2012-02-21 12:03

    if everyone got R9000 guarenteed salary we'd all be in mining

  • Brad.Kopping - 2012-02-21 12:04

    watch them burn down the mine then complain they got no jobs.

      Nitro - 2012-02-21 12:20

      and then blame it on..... you know what

  • Irene - 2012-02-21 12:09

    If they're not happy with the salaries that labourers earn, they're free to change careers anytime!

  • Phumi - 2012-02-21 12:10

    This is peanuts compared to the millions raked in by greedy and fealthy executives of Impala Platinum whilst many billions are whisked off-shore to investors (other name for thieves). Even during the hey days of platinum they never benefited handsomely compared to the work they (the workers) do to dig up this god given mana! Those owning monopoly capital must know who is in charge in this country and what our freedom charter says. The mineral wealth beneath the soil of this country belongs to all those who work it. The workers deserve their share and the minimum wage a platinum worker deserves is a platinum decent pay cheque to live by!

      Irene - 2012-02-21 12:14

      Biko Lives ~ What's a 'fealthy executive'? Seems like you think they're living the good life with no responsibilities or further education needed as to how to extract the 'mana'. I want one of those jobs where you can cash in freeeeee. Can you hook me up with one of those jobs?

      Alan - 2012-02-21 12:15

      Hey Juju - welcome back from obscurity

      Nitro - 2012-02-21 12:19

      I agree that if you work hard you need to get paid hard. But the problem is it is so easy to say I want this and I want that! It is so easy to sit on your o ring the whole day and then every 6 months strike to claim better wages. There are people of all races who would be so gratefull for R4000 a month. But now these ungratefull people wants more than doudble their current salary. These idiots can't even be realistic.

      Brett - 2012-02-21 12:20

      You really have no idea of how economics works do you? Perhaps you should ask your corrupt government to reduce the amount of tax and community contributions the mining companies have to pay and then they might be able to increase the wage. ANd what do you have to say about the 26 billion the ANC stole last year?

      Cracker - 2012-02-21 12:20

      @ Phumi I have a question. If you have only one dependent or no dependents at all, for example, would you also be entitled to the same R9,000 or R10,000 (apparently nett but actually a lot more, depending on the size of your family)that others claim based on their difficulty to come through because of their say 5,6, 7 children and/or dependents? In other words, non-parity based on the size of dependents and other expenses. Or are wages to be determined according to individuals needs, which is exactly one of the issues underlying the current dissatisfaction at the mine: no parity in salaries. This is now my understanding of how the problems started. I may be wrong, but nevertheless, the question remains valid.

      Deon - 2012-02-21 12:35

      So buy a mine and pay your workers that pay. I don't think many mines make an extra profit of + R110m per month to pay these increases for +- 22 000 miners.

      David - 2012-02-21 13:56

      @Irene. There is no denying that mine executive are filthy rich and who says the wealth that they rake in is not at the expense of mineworkers? Again, don't you think it is only fair to ask for salary hike after there is indication in the balance sheet that management can afford to pay more? Unlike passing judgment on the poor emnployees I advise that you grapple with rational behind workers' demand and if you are unable to, then, your accusation is unfair.

  • nkosiab - 2012-02-21 12:16

    you can't get R4000 in the street every month. Its a stupid choice to secrifice such for nothing. They rather meet each other halfway

      Nitro - 2012-02-21 12:28

      Agree like i have said if you put in the effort by all means. But to demand more than double increase is a bit unrealisitc.

  • Bardy - 2012-02-21 12:17

    @ FlowingRivers - This is reality... Not some cartoon we live in. WORK for your money! That is what a normal South African does! Not always "want want want want" FFS! That mentality will get you no where in life! These miners are on drugs and lazy and I commend the bosses for sacking their @sses!

  • Matthew - 2012-02-21 12:17

    Oh yes of course You've all been striking and promoting violence to get what you want And now you want R9000 well lets see here...lets take a look at how much of taxpayers money has to now go into repairing the roads,the mine,the shops and the hospital bills for those gravely injured...lets get a total from all of that and see how much that is... You are bl00dy lucky that the mine dosnt sue you for the damages!!! and you want R9000...who do you think you are??? really,wake up and smell the dont get paid for breaking the law you bunch of hooligans!

  • Vaaldonkie - 2012-02-21 12:22

    It's easy: give them nothing.

      Poloyatonki - 2012-02-21 12:31

      And who will dig the mines for nothing?

      Marion - 2012-02-21 12:50

      I am sure that one of these days someone will come up with automatic mine excavating machinery - it is just a matter of time if it hasn't been invented already.

      Merven - 2012-02-21 13:06

      Poloyatonki, there are plenty of Zimbabweans that will mine for R4000 a month.

      Tyron - 2012-02-21 14:41

      The technology is already there. Our mining industry is dangerous for 2 reasons, deep level and labour intensive. We are labour intensive because we cannot afford to fire the people and put thousands of people out of work. We need to create a decent manufacturing sector to balance both and employ a mix of machinery and manpower

  • Bandile - 2012-02-21 12:23

    Eish man, us Efricen wekkas.... they mus pay us what we want, not what the job he is worth. It is easy, Efricen economix 101.

  • Alfred - 2012-02-21 12:28

    I was actually feeling rather sympathetic for these guys until, "Protesters intensified their action, barricading roads to Freedom Park, stoning cars and looting shops. They also torched a satellite police station in Freedom Park." Now I just think the only bonus they deserve is a face full of buckshot.

      Alan - 2012-02-21 12:33

      Yip - every time these strikers burn down something .. they just don't get it that they are only shooting themselves in the foot.

  • Mzo - 2012-02-21 12:28

    Bardy, It is criminal to think that R9000 is too much for a mine worker. His superior earns a lot more then he does but all the hard ork is actually done by him. They have families to take care of, not families of 3-5 but of 6-10 and that includes their mothers and fathers and sometimes grand daughters as well. Those people work in very unhealthy condition and if a rock had to move, moset of them would not make it out while you are maybe sitting in your office and typing on a keyboard like I am doing now.

      Alan - 2012-02-21 12:35

      yeah - you have a point Mzo. We don't really understand the circumstances of these jobs, but at the end of the day - if a mine is unprofitable, these workers will have no jobs at all. Which is better?

      Marion - 2012-02-21 12:53

      Let's not forget about the fact that mothers, fathers and grandaughters etc., would all qualify for state grants thus increasing the income for the household.

      Tyron - 2012-02-21 14:46

      These guys are semi-skilled labour trained by the big mining operations. Before these jobs they had no skills. Nobody is saying mining is easy, but in order for the mine to operate u need levels of pay, and increasing skill levels. Comparing a shift boss salary to a miner is not correct. The mine boss has massive responsibility, budgets, labour isssues, etc to deal with. Besides, these guys get free food, free lodging, free medical, transport to work and back, bursaries for their children and these perks are never added in. Go to the small mining companies and then compare. Go to Aurora employees and see if the wrong people are at the top. Top execs do make money, but they also create an environment for thousands to succeed, and hopefully enable their children to a better life.

  • Vaaldonkie - 2012-02-21 12:28

    Here's anohter cool idea: tell your manager you don't like your salary, so you wish to learn a useful skill so that both of you can benefit.

      Duncan Thabiso Mphailane - 2012-02-21 12:35

      I asked a friend of mine who's a miner what you've just said and he told that you have to use that R4000 at your own time(not the companies time) to go to an FET college. This simply means you must quit then you'll be able to study. How do I quit when I need those peanuts to survive?

      Duncan Thabiso Mphailane - 2012-02-21 12:36

      I asked a friend of mine who's a miner what you've just said and he told that you have to use that R4000 at your own time(not the companies time) to go to an FET college. This simply means you must quit then you'll be able to study. How do I quit when I need those peanuts to survive?

      richard.hipkin - 2012-02-21 12:46

      @Duncan, you can study while still working. You do know that right?

      Marion - 2012-02-21 12:57

      I was employed in HR in major companies and EVERYONE had access to study grants and study leave etc., I don't know what training would be required to require full time attendance at an FET college though. There were people who attended part-time courses with the company's blessing and time off because the company was going to benefit in the longer term. They just had to sign contracts to pay back by working for the company for x number of years after as I recall. Maybe we should actually all look at the entire package they receive 'cos I, for one, am getting quite heated under the collar about this. Sorry folks.

      Merven - 2012-02-21 13:11

      Duncan, if they study a subject that will enhance his career in the mine, he'll be supported by his employers. But you can not expect as a miner, that the mine must pay for your lawyer studies.

  • Duncan Thabiso Mphailane - 2012-02-21 12:29

    Farm workers get R1200p/m or alcohol and its normal. What benefits do they get? Why should others work to survive while others work to live a good life. How will my get better with R4000pm? How can a man give his children better education, feed them and give them shelter with R4000? What good is employment when the employed masses still depend on the government to give them free houses, free education, free health care, social grants etc to survive?

      Bandile - 2012-02-21 12:36

      Hauk man Duncan, a job is only worth what it is worth to the employer, not what the employee wants to live on. When one hears arguments like yours one realises why Africa is such a basket case.

      Merven - 2012-02-21 13:13

      Well said Bandile. Any job is a business transaction, what you want to earn and what the employer are willing to pay. If one is not happy with the deal, find another deal, don't try to blackmail the boss into your terms.

  • Mashudu - 2012-02-21 12:29

    They deserve better salaries.

      richard.hipkin - 2012-02-21 12:46


  • Duncan Thabiso Mphailane - 2012-02-21 12:29

    Farm workers get R1200p/m or alcohol and its normal. What benefits do they get? Why should others work to survive while others work to live a good life. How will my get better with R4000pm? How can a man give his children better education, feed them and give them shelter with R4000? What good is employment when the employed masses still depend on the government to give them free houses, free education, free health care, social grants etc to survive?

      Alan - 2012-02-21 12:37

      I guess a start would be for people to limit the size of their families according to their means for both the children's, and their own sakes.

  • Vishan Vallabhjee - 2012-02-21 12:32

    In the USA and UK (Welsh) underground miners earn around $65 000 per annum excluding bonuses with the salary taking into account the nature of the job, i.e Risk. In dollar terms R 4000 pm is about $6200. Given that most of these mined resources are sold abroad and in dollars and these earnings are often repatriated to the USA and UK maybe we should unite behind our own. They're doing the exact same job after all and I assume under less forgiven circumstances.

      Marion - 2012-02-21 13:00

      Thank you for that information Vishan. Is the cost of living as low as ours in those countries? e.g. how long does someone there have to work to earn enough to buy, say, a Big Mac. Use Big Mac 'cos all countries have McDonalds.

      Nosiphom - 2012-02-21 13:31

      So they are erning almost $1000 more than their counterparts overseas?

  • mpokeleng - 2012-02-21 12:38

    shame on these people are demanding sash amount,let them col down and go back to work before they even loose the 4k,MR Moabi he must try to save in time for children's future,and yes for 10 yeas working in the mine he deserve something better.

  • Mlungisi - 2012-02-21 12:40

    R4000 a month? then a guy with 1 year A+ gets R16000 as an entry level at the same company.

      richard.hipkin - 2012-02-21 12:48

      What?? A+ and earning R16,000!! Tell me where so I can go work there!! Rubbish, rubbish, rubbish...

      rowan.maulson - 2012-02-21 12:52

      Complete twaddle... Someone with an A+ does NOT get R16kpm... try closer to R4k gross. Someone with a 3 year degree MIGHT start on R16k pm... but even thats not guaranteed.

      Cracker - 2012-02-21 12:56

      Where? Then tell the miners who don't like their wage to go to those companies then and get the jobs. Why do they bother working in mines?

      Merven - 2012-02-21 13:14

      Mlungisi, you're smoked, no A+ guy starts on R16000 with one year experience, talk sha*t somewhere else.

  • Final.Punishment - 2012-02-21 12:44

    I'll take the 4k job, I need money!!!

  • Steven - 2012-02-21 12:56

    what tickles me is the manner in which they handle the situation. it started off as a retention bonus they did not receive, so they strike and loose income for 2 weeks (for a R1000 bonus?), then cause their employer HUGE losses, then they go and intimidate other employees, causing further damage etc. now it has progressed to a 125% increase in salary!?? WTF!? they all signed their contracts of employment, they KNEW the job they were signing up for, now they want to make demands. this is just typical of how the illiterate fools think they doing themselves a favour!! but all they doing is wrecking the mining industry, along with investors watching our every move!! what the hell if this was controlled by government? us tax payers will foot the bill once again. HECK man, I did not receive a good bonus this year, but I was GRATEFUL for my job!! I did not retaliate by trying to burn down my own employer premises. as a employee we are expected to look after the companys best interests. fire all the savages, just look how they carry on!! dancing and raving like lunatics!!! this is a joke!!

      richard.hipkin - 2012-02-21 12:59

      I'm not even getting a raise this year. Bonus? What's that?

  • Afrikopite - 2012-02-21 13:00

    You are all commenting right because you are all adults. Afterall its not your money so don't worry if they demand more and since you are not the owner of the mine don't demand ridiculous figures.

  • rickvcooper - 2012-02-21 13:02

    Give them the nothing!

  • ludlowdj - 2012-02-21 13:07

    Although the whites scream foul her its time to accept that as long as workers are not being paid a living wage these sorts of protests will just get worse and worse, as for their salaries, show me a family that can survive on less than 12 000 a month and I'll show you a squatter camp

      Merven - 2012-02-21 13:18

      'Although the whites scream foul' Stupid idiot, many of these mines belong to blacks like Patrice Motsepe etc. So keep your racism to yourself.

      rowan.maulson - 2012-02-21 13:19

      Ummmm... I know of a quite a few families that are surviving on less than R12000 per month.... Yes R4k gross is not a great salary, but i think this R4k figure is nett, which makes things a very different kettle of fish because the miners probably get quite a few benefits that are deductions straight off their salary.

      Bomb - 2012-02-21 13:37

      My friend earns 7500-00 before tax, is married with two kids. He pays his rent,water and electr (not squatter camp rates, but inflated rates to also subsidize the squatter camps) and his kids go to school. His wife earns 4000. That's R11500-00. They have two vehicles. Their rent is R5000-00 p/m. How do they do it? And they don't live in a squatter camp. My other friend is a soldier, single, earns approx 4000/pm, like these miners. He rents a flat with water and electr. How does he do it??? Most miners don't even bother to pay water and electr and probably not rent also. Although I agree R4000-00 is very little, R9000-00 is ridiculous. The mine should have its own school for miners children, and should provide an amount of bursaries for further study. I know there were mines that did this pre-ANC. Unfortunately post-ANC everything disintegrated.

      Wade Terblanche - 2012-02-21 13:56

      I also know a family who is living off -R12000, and they battle, they can never have any luxaries. With R4000 how can you pay off a car, insurance, tracker, medical aids, food, travelling costs etc etc etc etc etc etc etc!!! simply you just cant. How much profit the mine makes is what I would like to know as if the profit allows for a R9000 salary then they deserve it!

      Kent - 2012-02-21 18:37

      @ ludlowdj. When a company employs you they pay for your labour. Yet your family (extended) wants to live of your salary aswell. They should have their own jobs and be contribution to the family budget. The family you have is of no concern to the employer as you are productive in the mine and you only. If you want to marry and have kids before you are settled in your job it is your problem.

  • Victor - 2012-02-21 13:19

    Nothing. Close the mine. Why don't they blame the ANC for the high cost of living. Instead they vote for them again

  • Sachen - 2012-02-21 13:32

    Simple, if you earn R4000, DON'T HAVE CHILDREN!!!!

  • Craig - 2012-02-21 13:39

    Hmmm... if the mines are nationalised and JZ nephew takes over running the show, the workers will still go on strike, but this time it will be to get paid for the last few months that they never saw a dime...

  • Tshiamo - 2012-02-21 13:48

    Unfortunately my 'people' you have to work for it. Now, take your sorry assesses to work!!!You don't even have the work ethic, let alone the skills to earn that money!!

  • Trudy - 2012-02-21 14:02

    I understand that R4000 is very little to eke a living out with but we should ask what expenses there are for them as well. If most live in an informal settlement they don't have rent or bonds to pay, receive free electricity and water and get free health care. And subsidised money for every kid. As opposed to computer engineers who earn R9000 but had to pay for their own education, pay rent every month, pay for medical assistance and don't get government subsidies. Also where mine workers generally have free mine-supplied transport to the mine sites, others who maybe earn more have to pay for their own transport and the running costs thereof as well as insurance on top of that.

  • Yolanda - 2012-02-21 14:07

    over 50% increase. i should be so lucky!

      Kent - 2012-02-21 18:42

      @Yolanda. It is more than double and is thus more than 100%