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Marikana miners to keep their jobs

Jul 05 2012 08:00 Sapa

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Johannesburg - Seventy-five percent of employees at the Marikana platinum mine in Rustenburg will not be retrenched, trade union Solidarity said on Wednesday.

The union welcomed the announcement of mining group Aquarius Platinum [JSE:AQP] that the estimated 1 500 employees who worked at the number four shaft, which was shut down earlier this month, would be employed with other mining groups.

"Aquarius Platinum, the owner of the shaft in question, and Murray & Roberts, the principal mining contractor who managed the labour-related aspects of the business, agreed to end their contract," spokesperson Louis Pretorius said.

In a statement he said the mining group managed the process through a comprehensive social plan and it assisted employees in applying for jobs at other mining groups.

"Aquarius will be the owner and operator of its mines from now on. The employees who were formerly in the employ of Murray & Roberts at Aquarius Platinum's number four shaft will be transferred to Aquarius and deployed at other mining groups, in a process that is in keeping with section 197 of the Labour Relations Act."

Pretorius said the trade union was hoping for an equally positive outcome at the Aquarius's Everest mine near Mashishing (Lydenburg) which had also closed.

The union was concerned over Aquarius CEO Stuart Murray's call on other mining groups to also close down mines, in order to "cut unnecessary production which depresses the industry".

Pretorius said the closure of more platinum mines would lead to further job losses.

"Shutting down other platinum mines will not necessarily have a favourable outcome, as in Marikana's case.

"Care and maintenance crews may stay on at the mines following their closure, but the rest of the employees would lose their jobs."

 
solidarity  |  aquarius platinum  |  miners
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