Implats strike averted by ‘pay adjustment’
IMPALA Platinum said on Thursday it was giving workers a "pay adjustment", though spokesman Bob Gilmour said the company could not yet give details.
A union organiser at Implats said the offer was for across-the-board increases and workers seemed happy with the offer.
Implats was offering underground workers better pay, Lesiba Seshoka, a spokesman for the National Union of Mineworkers, said on Thursday. The exclusion of surface workers from the changed pay arrangement may prove "a challenge", he said.
Khayelethu Mzimeli, chairman of the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) at Implats, said: “We are not going on strike, the mine has agreed to adjust our pay with effect from October 1.”
Former African National Congress Youth League leader Julius Malema, meanwhile, had cancelled his planned address to Implats workers in Rustenburg, for fear of being arrested, the Friends of the Youth League said.
Earlier in September, workers at Implats demanded a second increase. A six-week strike in March was resolved with an agreement to bring forward the July increase set out in a two-year wage deal that was in force.
In September, as strikes in the mining sector spread, Lonmin workers sought a July increase on top of the one implemented earlier.
On September 11, Implats said it had offered a full pay review after a meeting with the workers’ committee.
Mr Malema had planned to address Implats workers on Thursday to lend support to their demands. He made his declaration to do so after his court appearance in Polokwane on Wednesday for money laundering.
"It has come to our attention that members of the South African Police Service were instructed by a politician to arrest us, since the mine workers and event organisers were refused a permit to hold the meeting," the Friends of the Youth League said on Thursday.
Last week, Mr Malema was prevented from entering a stadium in Marikana filled with striking Lonmin mineworkers.
Police said this was because he was not a worker involved in the labour dispute that the mineworkers had gathered to discuss.
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