Marikana miners lower salary demands

2012-09-17 18:36

Rustenburg - The striking miners at Lonmin’s Marikana platinum mine have for the first time lowered their salary demands, the mediator in the dispute said on Monday.

"We have been mandated to negotiate on a specific figure. The workers are not married to the R12 500 monthly salary, Bishop Jo Seoka, president of the South African Council of Churches, said.

Seoka's comments came after a meeting in a stadium with 2 000 miners on Monday afternoon that was authorised by police and took place without incident.

He said he could not disclose the figure before they tabled it at negotiations with mining giant Lonmin [JSE:LON] set to resume on Monday.

"We hope the news will be better than this tomorrow [Tuesday]," he said, adding that should an agreement be reached, the miners would return to work on Tuesday.

The miners were reportedly prepared to accept a monthly salary of R11 000, according to news channel eNCA. The strikers claim they currently earn about R4 000 per month.

Earlier Seoka had pleaded with the striking miners to lower their monthly salary demand.

"You must give us a mandate to go a little bit down," he told them, while insisting it should not be to the level that would hurt them.

The bishop had been called in to help with the mining crisis after police last month shot dead 34 strikers taking part in the wildcat strike which began at Marikana on 10 August.

The unrest has claimed a total 45 lives and spread to strikes at other mines, leading to a police clampdown in a bid to restore order and salvage the country's lucrative mining sector.

On Friday the miners rejected Lonmin's first offer to break the deadlock at Marikana. They claimed Lonmin offered an entry level hike of R986.

President Jacob Zuma warned earlier on Monday that the gold and platinum mines have lost R4.5bn to forced stoppages this year, which could push the country into recession.

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  • rohin.jadin - 2012-09-17 18:52

    Raise your hand if you're surprised. Labour negotiations amongst the masses in this country is a dance we all know well,

  • Siphokazi Spokie Kombela Mavela - 2012-09-17 19:01

    i just this could work out for peace sake

  • douglas.reid.921 - 2012-09-17 19:03

    R4.5 billion lost in mining downtime will put us into a recession. What did the R675 billion lost to corruption do???

      gary.bloom.967 - 2012-09-18 09:23

      and R1200 jobs lost since the striking started..........once again none of these idiots look at the bigger picture, it's just me me me me.

  • mpho.c.moreki - 2012-09-17 19:37

    Soon this fools will be retrenched, because the mine wont have enough money to buy their crazy labour.I wonder if our president can further explain how the country will end up in recession.there is far a lot of money government wastes on tenderpreneur than the R4.5 billion he claims the mines have lost.

      lacrimose.wolf - 2012-09-17 21:58

      1200 jobs already gone

      joubert.joep - 2012-09-18 04:07

      Get rid of them and get somebody that wants the 4000 per month (a lot of people do not even get that) - preferably people from South Africa!

  • khosi2 - 2012-09-17 19:55

    At last the strike will come to an end because the miners have agreed to take 11thousand,thank you again to Bishop to knock some sense on this miners. I salute you

      mark.singh.9889 - 2012-09-18 12:01

      they have agreed on R11k. Do you think the mine owners are also going to agree on that? i dont think so. They will have to negotiate much lower, like around R5k

  • monde.sibisi - 2012-09-17 19:57

    So het hulle uiteindelik terug na hul sintuie en opgehou luister het na daardie baster Juliarse. Nog 'n ding, 300 persent was heeltemal ridicullous. 'N R8000 tierome? Hoe snaaks

  • godfrey.ngonyama - 2012-09-17 19:57

    Omg,he's worried about R4,5 billion loss,what about the money that our country lose on corruption,what about a Zumaville that will be built for R2b?.......Mr president u shouldn't have mentioned that,,,as I said before,You are Pap

  • julius.mamputa - 2012-09-17 20:20

    The miners deserve atleast R15000, with the inflation fluctuations in this country, in the next ten years they will strike for another increase, or Lonmin can give some miners time off after six month period, then come back to renew contracts, therefore it's a win and win situation, even if Lonmin dont settle, somewhere down the line they will lose money as other mining compony does, so rather invest in people, so that the production is executed.

      thepatrickwinter - 2012-09-17 20:32

      Lets give them R20000 with a house and picket fence, not sure what colour to paint the fence, maybe considered a racist remark. Can't be too careful in this place. PATHETIC BEYOND BELIEF. Good Luck.

      mark.singh.9889 - 2012-09-18 12:17

      plus a nice company car, BM/Merc C63 or similar. 200days leave PA. Secretary to do their filing

      yvonne.joseph.1612 - 2012-09-18 14:33

      Your comments describe exactly the misunderstanding of the whole concept. There is more labour than jobs available,how can you threaten,when you are in a compromising position,there are more people ouit there who will work for less

  • Bra Tebzaah Sibilanga - 2012-09-17 20:27

    Cut the bull and pay them,they are umderpaid anyway.

  • willie.christie.16 - 2012-09-17 20:56

    I know people with degrees that earn less. What motivation will there be to get a good education if you can get that much without finishing high school?

      lerato.kay.3 - 2012-09-18 03:42

      Those people are definately not in the platinum business!

  • Chris - 2012-09-17 21:13

    Two problems; 1. Lonmin should never have started negotiating with a bunch of rabble who have murdered 11 people. This is beyond ignorant or stupid - it is grossly irresponsible. 2. The bishop might be a nice person but he has no idea how wage negotiations work and shouldn't be in this picture. But that's not his fault, it's Lonmin's - they should be managing this by locking the strikers out. Instead they are digging a hole for themselves by talking to a mix of murders and ignorant do-gooders. Workers say that the only way to get action is by violent protest - Lonmin has just proved them right. Well done Lonmin, you have just stuffed up the mining sector single-handeldly.

      bongile.langa - 2012-09-17 22:50

      It did not have to go that faaaaaaaaaarrrr, Lonmin and the rest of involved athoritiez should have seen that one coming, their loss...their problem!

  • stanleysven.larsen - 2012-09-17 21:29

    Zuma said on the news that other partys had said it was just like appertheid, well i if it was not, then please tell the difference shame what planet does he live on?Secondly do not comepare the church to abunch of corrupt polititions

      adri.noble - 2012-09-18 07:44

      Spell check then Zuma check. Your writing is so 5years old.

  • johan.jacobs.5680 - 2012-09-17 21:41

    Empty tummies are much more flexible.

      mark.singh.9889 - 2012-09-18 12:20

      Needs to be emptied a bit more

  • mudaue - 2012-09-17 22:22

    Atleast it seems der s gonna b a breakthrough

  • marschoeman - 2012-09-18 05:50

    A 300% increase... The fact remains that they are unskilled labor. The meaning of "Unskilled Labor": "work that requires practically no training or experience for its adequate or competent performance." With other words; the miners want to earn more than a lot of graduates earn after completing their studies and start to work. The fact is that Lonmin have all the bargaining chips... Unskilled labor also means that replacing the work-force is relatively simple. If they can demand, Lonmin can demand. Demand them to start working or getting fired.

      ChrisGRoyle - 2012-09-18 06:51

      It's more like 100 to 175 percent increase depending on what base figure you believe. The articles never distinguish between net or gross pay - if the former, it'll cost Lonmin even more.

  • marc.rule - 2012-09-18 06:59

    FIRE THEM ALL. Hire people that WANT to work.

  • hennie.christodoulou - 2012-09-18 08:21

    With millions jobless...I say fire all illegal strikers because they are effectively stealing from the company and hire an entire new labour force and spend the additional R7k a month teaching the new employees a trade skill...and let's see if ANY other company will hire the guys who have caused foreign investors to pull out of SA faster than you can click "sell". This is so much bigger than race and greed, this is a lack of ethics that has hurt our entire country not just the mine.

  • winifred.watson.9 - 2012-09-18 10:12

    They will definetly get an increase, this would have been given to them anyway without having to protests. Problem now many of them are going to suffer job losses because of it. The mine has already shelved the idea of opening up one of their what does that say. So those, who are lucky to be re-instated and get an increase I hope you will think about those workers who died in vain and the workers who will not be re=instated. Nothing good in life comes without a price and this will be your price.

  • carol.paterson.923 - 2012-09-18 13:37

    If Lonmin give into the miners demands it won't stop there. All the other mines will have a problem and in a few months time they will strike gain for higher wages. It should be either back to work now or fire the ones who don't want to work and take those back who are keen to work. I don't agree with Lonmin paying a 'back-to-work-bonus'.

  • robthornkzn - 2012-09-18 16:18

    Lonmin claims that the miners cost to them is already about R10,500 per month and R12, 500 per month, plus bonuses and without the last negotiated increase.This monthly salary figure has also been confirmed by Solidarity Trade Union. This bears absolutely no comparison to the figure of R4000 per month which the media insisit on repeating, almost daily basis. Why does the media not ascertain these facts prior to publication, after all does it sound credible that Lonmin would pay it's miners one third of the industry standard of about R10 to 12K per month, which all other mines are paying?

  • asadpat - 2012-09-19 10:54

    Having read the comments, I notice a common misconception: "Education/Degree determines ones salary." brainwashed and blinded these educated fools are! The world cares nothing of your Degree, but only of the VALUE you ADD. Miners on the ground are the foundational source adding more value to its shareholders than a bunch of educated offices workers.

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