Lonmin gets strike notice from AMCU

Platinum producer Lonmin [JSE: LON] says it has received a notice for a sympathy strike from the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU) in support of its ongoing stay-away at Sibanye-Stillwater.

The company said that according to the notice the strike will commence on February 28 and last until March 7.

Thousands of AMCU members at Sibanye gold operation have been on strike since November 21, demanding higher wage increases.

"Lonmin is in the process of obtaining legal advice to inform our response to the notice," it said. 

On Tuesday, AMCU leader Joseph Mthunjwa announced that workers affiliated to the union will embark on a "secondary strike" - in a bid to push Sibanye to accede to their wage demands. Strikes are planned at Harmony, Impala Platinum in Rustenburg and coal mines in Limpopo, according to Mathunjwa.

About 15 000 AMCU members at Sibanye's gold operations, south of Johannesburg, downed tools three months ago, demanding an annual wage increase of R1 000 for the next three years. AMCU did not sign a wage agreement which was accepted by other unions, including its main rival, the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM).

The strike has been marred by acts of violence, with both sides accusing each other of peddling instability. On Tuesday, Mathunjwa accused Sibanye CEO Neal Froneman of not wanting to negotiate with the union and urged investors to pull out of the company. 

AMCU is also opposed to job cuts announced by the firm.

The union has also rejected the R5.17bn takeover of Lonmin by Sibanye, and its case would be heard by the Competition Appeal Court of South Africa on April 2.

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