Bloemfontein - The NUM has refuted Sibanye Gold's assertions that it reached consensus with unions to retrench over a thousand workers at Beatrix West in the Free State.
The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) was not aware of such an agreement and was not party to it, said spokesperson Lesiba Seshoka.
He said the NUM agreed with the company on the issue of voluntary severance packages.
Seshoka said workers could voluntarily separate from the employer rather than have retrenchments forced on them.
"NUM is disappointed with the distortion of facts by the company," he said.
On Wednesday, Sibanye Gold announced that it was pleased with an agreement with employees and organised labour about the future of its Beatrix West Section, following consultations which started on April 2.
The agreement would result in the implementation of a number of measures aimed at temporarily returning the Beatrix West section to profitability, it said.
"Management has agreed to keep this section open for as long as it remains profitable," the company said in a statement.
The measures include stopping development at the Beatrix West section, which would affect 330 employees, and reducing the Beatrix operation as a whole, which would reduce 780 over-complement positions.
Seshoka said the company had agreed, in talks, to set aside its section 189 retrenchment notice, and to give voluntary separation a chance.
"The shaft that the company complained about in its substantiation of retrenchments has since re-opened, and thus the NUM sees no reason for any retrenchment whatsoever," he said.
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