Strike forces Northam Platinum to suspend operations

Operations at Northam Platinum’s Zondereinde mine in Limpopo have been temporarily suspended.

Mine management stopped operations today to ensure the safety of its employees and company property after some workers embarked on an unprotected strike earlier in the week, spokesperson Marion Brower said.

“This decision has been taken amid rising tension at the mine, owing to incidents of intimidation, assault and threats of violence towards non-striking employees and damage to property on January 15 2015.”

The National Union of Mineworkers said its members went on a strike on Tuesday night.

The union’s chief negotiator at Northam Platinum, Ecliff Tantsi, said the workers’ demands were policy-related.

On Wednesday, the Labour Court granted an interim interdict to end the strike.

“A large number of employees signalled a desire to return to work on January 15 in line with the direction of the Labour Court,” she said.

Disciplinary proceedings, including dismissals, would be implemented for those who did not return to work following the interdict.

Mine management was engaging with the union to try and normalise operations.

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