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Amplats strike to escalate

Oct 14 2012 13:29 Sapa

Strikers at Amplats in Rustenburg. (AFP)

Company Data

Anglo American Plat Ltd [JSE:AMS]

Last traded 398.70
Change 1.24
% Change 0.00
Cumulative volume 288997
Market cap 107.52bn

Last Updated: 19/09/2014 at 04:26. Prices are delayed by 15 minutes. Source: McGregor BFA

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Johannesburg - Striking Anglo Platinum [JSE:AMS] (Amplats) workers will not suspend their strike, the Rustenburg Joint Strike Co-ordinating Committee said on Sunday.

"We are not going to be intimidated into submission. We are not going to participate in any form of disciplinary hearing," said spokesperson Mametlwe Sebei.

He said the disciplinary hearing was a threat aimed at forcing the workers to abandon the strike.

"We will engage management on issues relating to our demand, which is a R16 000 salary [at Amplats mines]."

He said the only way to resolve issues affecting mineworkers in South Africa was to nationalise the mines.

"The only way to deal with the cheap migrant labour legacy is to allow mine workers to own these mine through nationalisation."

Sebei said he would be visiting other mines to push forward their demand for a basic salary of R12 500.

"I will be at mines in Limpopo, Free State and Carletonville from Monday."

On Saturday, he told reporters in Marikana that the strike in the mining sector was continuing despite threats of dismissal.

"No amount of threats or deaths can stop us, we are determined to continue with the strike."

Sebei said a meeting of the strike committees in all mines in the country had agreed to intensify the strike.

"We have agreed to escalate the strike, we are going to shut down the bit that is still operating. All workers in the country must be paid a minimum of R12 500. We are calling for a minimum wage for all workers."

It was agreed that workers should embark on a national strike in November to push for a minimum wage. The national strike was planned for November 3.

Sebei, who is from the Democratic Socialist Movement, denied they had "hijacked" the mineworkers strike.

"We are in solidarity with the workers. Four weeks after the Marikana strike, we saw that no one was standing up for the workers and we offered them solidarity."

He said his movement would canvas international support for mineworkers.

"We will call for a solidarity march at SA embassies abroad, the day workers stage a national strike. It is not fair that mineworkers are living in poor condition while the bosses' pets are far better off."

The committee made up of leaders from different mines in Rustenburg, met with other leaders from mines in Limpopo, Free State and Mpumalanga with a view of forming a national committee to speak for mineworkers, when the strikes were over.

"We need to have a constitution that will guide us to deal with those who left the structures once issues at their mines have been resolved," said Evan Ramokga, one of the leaders.

He said leaders at mines that were still operating should not expose strikers to arrest by leading them to shut down the mines.

"Do not use the wildcat [strikes], you expose them to arrest. Rather come to us to share ideas. We know how to shut the mines. The aim is to stop smelters from operating."

Amplats has fired 12 000 workers for failing to attend disciplinary hearings.

On Friday, Amplats said the four-week long strike had cost it R1.1bn in revenue.

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amplats  |  rustenburg  |  mining unrest
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