South Africa: Another Mine Strike Looms At Anglo-American

South Africa: Another Mine Strike Looms At Anglo-American
South African miners are still exploited as cheap labour by foreign mining companies

AFRICANGLOBE – Another wildcat mine strike is brewing at the world’s largest platinum producer, Anglo-American – an Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU) committee member has revealed on Thursday.

Mpumi Sithole said: “We’ve taken note of the news of impending strike at the weekend, but we had no form of comment from our bosses on the issues they want to raise.

“We are urging them to use the existing channels to address their concerns. We advise against illegal work stoppages as that may lead to disciplinary action.”

Amplats worker committee leaders have briefed the media on their plans to down tools on Sunday.

Gaddafi Mdoda, workers’ leader said their demands include the scrapping of the restructuring at Amplats that would see 6,000 jobs cut and that the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) should vacate its offices at the mine, where Amcu is now in the majority.

“We have to force mine bosses, otherwise they will never change,” he said.

The upcoming strike was again not sanctioned by the union.

While analysts and rating agencies have warned that the strike will damage investor sentiment, South Africa’s Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies doesn’t agree with that assertion.

Speaking ahead of debate in the National Assembly on the Department of Trade and Industry’s R9.6bn budget for this year, Davies said: “Let me say (this) about strikes, Marikana, all that type of stuff, (and whether it is) dampening the appetite for industrial investment. Let me put it this way: to a much lesser extent than you would imagine, if you read the noise that comes through the press in South Africa. To a much lesser extent.”

While such events affected the mining industry itself, and portfolio investors, this was not the case in what he called the “real” economy.

“People in the real economy, people who are actually looking at the growth prospects on the African continent, where they can invest. It (the case) is the opposite,” Davies said.