Pretoria - The Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) abstained from signing a framework agreement for the mining industry, endorsed in Pretoria by numerous mining roleplayers, on Wednesday.
The pact, brokered by Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe, was aimed at resolving the issues bedevilling the mining sector.
Addressing reporters after a lengthy meeting attended by senior officials of Amcu and its rival National Union of Mineworkers, Motlanthe said he hoped Amcu would sign soon.
"They requested that they would want to get a mandate to sign [from members]. They are not going to canvass on the content. That has been agreed on," he said.
"They will revert back to the secretary of this forum ASAP. They say they want time to go back to their members."
The document has been signed by Chamber of Mines' vice president Mike Teke, Federation of Unions of SA general secretary Dennis George, Congress of SA Trade Unions general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi, and Mineral Resources Minister Susan Shabangu.
Senior Amcu officials, led by president Joseph Mathunjwa, attended the talks.
President Jacob Zuma tasked Motlanthe with leading talks between unions and mining companies. The industry had been plagued by strikes and violence, especially in the Rustenburg platinum belt.
Motlanthe previously said he was optimistic the parties would reach a solution.
"We will pull together all loose strands, and I am optimistic we will find each other and agree on the issues affecting the industry."