Carletonville - Striking miners at Gold Fields KDC West mine
resolved on Thursday that they would stop miners who had decided to return to
"There's no one that will go underground
tomorrow," workers' representative Vusi Tshomela said.
"We will go to the shafts and stop the people from
KDC West workers have been on strike for more than a month
and were given a final ultimatum by Gold Fields to return to work on Thursday.
Meanwhile a spokesperson for the company said 80% of workers
at Gold Fields’ KDC West mine had returned to work by the dismissal deadline.
“A large number of people have today arrived at the site and
clocked their punch cards. The real test now is to see whether they return for
the first shift tomorrow morning,” company spokesperson Willie Jacobsz said.
However, hundreds of miners were gathered on a hilltop off
mine property to attend a mass meeting at noon on Thursday.
During the meeting, the possibility of joining another union
"We are looking at Amcu (the Association of Mineworkers
and Construction Union) or the Democratic Socialist Movement," he said.
It was also decided they would stay on the hilltop
throughout the night.
A group of workers' representatives would have a separate
meeting and would give the workers feedback later, Tshomela said.
Mineworker Clement Ntlantlapo said miners who were working
would be stopped and should join the strike.
"They want to go and stop them from clocking and they
must join the strike."
Another said he would not leave the hilltop until his demand
for better wages was met.
"We are not going anywhere. The only thing that I am
sure of is that night-shift is not going to work. They owe us money," said
32-year old Ishmael Naile.
John Motone, 35, said: "We are dissatisfied about the
outcomes. We don't know if we will get what we want."
A pamphlet given to workers on Thursday morning notified
workers that more than 3 000 employees had reported for duty at KDC West.
"More employees are on their way to work, we are
told," the pamphlet read.
"We wish to urge all employees to ensure that they
report at their shafts by no later than 2pm today failing which you will be
dismissed from work."
Management informed workers they needed to report for work
and stay for the entire shift. Failure to do so would be seen as strike action.
It said police had acted against people on Wednesday evening
who intimidated and attacked miners who wished to return to work.
"To this end, please note that no illegal gatherings
will be permitted again in KDC West, including the one planned for 10am (on
It warned that the police would act against the people
organising the gatherings and would disperse them.
"Let's go back to work and try to save our mine and our
jobs," the pamphlet read.