Gold Fields gains right to fire workers

2012-09-26 15:37

Johannesburg - Gold Fields [JSE:GFI] has obtained a second interdict against striking workers at its Beatrix mine in the Free State, and is considering taking action, the company said on Wednesday.

"Firing the striking workers is an option we are considering," spokesperson Sven Lunsche said.

"We obtained the second interdict, which gives us a right to [fire striking workers]."

Workers at KDC West (formerly Driefontein), near Merafong in Gauteng, went on an unprotected strike on September 9, demanding a monthly salary of R12 500 after deductions.

The strike spread to the West Section of Beatrix (formerly Oryx Mine) near Welkom on Friday, and to the rest of the mine by Monday.

Lunsche said attendance was between 10% and 15%. Only essential services were available, and operations had come to a standstill.

"We are not meeting with the striking workers, because they are not recognised," he said.

"We are encouraging the National Union of Mineworkers [Num] to engage with their striking members."

However, Num spokesperson Lesiba Seshoka said it was not the duty of the union alone to ensure workers returned to work, but also that of the employer.

"They [Gold Fields] can't say that they won't engage with the workers because they are not a union or recognised," he said.

"The reality is that we all need to work together to find solutions to the current crises. The employers must come to the table and listen to the workers."

The union was worried that things were not going as they were supposed to, but were spiralling out of control, he said.

Num leaders were expected to address striking Gold Fields workers at the Beatrix mine later on Wednesday.

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  • annelise.venter.77 - 2012-09-26 15:43

    Strike them from your payroll, fire the lot of them! No work, no pay, no job!

      janice.mcmaster.92 - 2012-09-26 16:07

      Agreed 100% GET rid of the lazy fools who jump on the band wagon!!!

  • mike.dufham.7 - 2012-09-26 15:44

    Get rid of this rabble, and that includes the unions

  • deon.louw.7505 - 2012-09-26 15:46

    Maybe it is time to discipline these unprotected strikers.

  • phumi.ntlabati - 2012-09-26 15:55

    Gold fields must be brought onto its knees, until their shareholders start feeling the pinch, on their bottom-line! The workers will not be intimidated by court interdict to get their share of our God given spoils! We are 100% behind them until the dog who is sitting on their money starts barking the language we understand of our money! Asijiki!!

      elgh.elgh - 2012-09-26 16:01

      Gold fields must take this opportunity and teach them a lesson. This has gone too far now with our economy taking a hit. Phumi, the only ones going onto their knees will be your friends begging for their jobs once they on the street.

      deon.louw.7505 - 2012-09-26 16:01

      Workers can perhaps hold out for a week or 3 but bosses for a year or 3, it can only end badly for these unprotected strikers.

      james.m.wood.773 - 2012-09-26 16:06

      oh phumi, you poor unimformed person. the KDC operation is merely 15%of goldfields, they themselves have admitted they can do with out it, and are ready for a protracted strike until the workers come to THEIR knees! i sincerely hope they all get fired so that a lesson may be learnt!

      lydonmcg - 2012-09-26 16:06

      "We" being who? You and the retard brigade?

      brak.jan - 2012-09-26 16:16

      Not be intimidated by a court interdict? Bringing the some of the biggest employers to 'their knees' in a country with one of the highest unemployment rates in the world? This is really sad, I sincerely hope that people who reason like you are in the minority. This nonsense should stop, and the court's verdict on this is a step in the right direction. An example of these workers should be made, Gold fields should fire the lot of them. Striking is THE worst way to communicate any grievances, much bigger economies than ours have been irreparably damaged by them. We cannot afford action like this any longer

      alan.gernet - 2012-09-26 16:22

      Phumi - you really are clueless! I actually feel sorry for you.

  • chiepner - 2012-09-26 16:11

    Gold Fields will use this oppertunity to cull their working force. It seems that they are already restructuring their entire operations which would of meant alot of probable job losses. Not a good move by these miners to pull a fast one. Think this will suit the mining company more than the miners.

  • rowan.maulson - 2012-09-26 16:17

    Fire them GoldFields.. Show them precisely how the real world actually works.

  • thabang.tsoku - 2012-09-26 16:29

    hell will break loose , its warning im just saying u mess with an hungry man

      jim.binnie.1 - 2012-09-26 17:15

      and what about the MILLIONS of VERY HUNGRY unemployed South Africans who would sell their souls for a JOB - ANY Job???

      appietrader - 2012-09-26 17:56

      With trigger happy policemen around. Better they don't start the hell. Watch out what you WISH FOR!!!

  • John Peter Steyn - 2012-09-26 18:03

    Now all mines will have a new minimum wage of R12,500. Unless these strikers are dismissed. Balls to the wall time for amplats

  • arthur.salvado - 2012-09-27 07:34

    No work, no pay, no job. Fine. But what's the next plan? No easy solution here. We need good negotiating skills and leadership. Firing all the striking workers will leave us with what ? It seems the mines do have a huge problem with no immediate sustainable solution. Where will this end ? I can see more strikes coming especially with Malema starting his rounds. Hold on tight SA we are in for a ride of note.

  • mlungisi.kunene - 2012-09-27 08:23

    its no rocket science and SA to reach its democracy subscribe to the fact that unity can bring down any system,they can not punish everyone..firing these striking workers is no solution..they will attack those who go to work, burn down property as usual and the company stock will plunge..then who win? no one..go back to the boardrooms and reach consensus

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