Ramatlhodi looks to amend labour act

The mineral resources minister will soon meet with the ANC's subcommittee to discuss the economy.

Minister of Mineral Resources Ngoako Ramatlhodi. Picture: GCIS.

JOHANNESBURG - Mineral Resources Minister Ngoako Ramatlhodi on Friday said he'll begin discussions on possible amendments to the Labour Relations Act.

That would give the state the power to end a strike if it went on for too long.

The minister first made the suggestion after withdrawing from mediated talks aimed at ending the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu)s' living wage strike, which started more than five months ago.

Workers on the platinum belt are demanding a basic salary of R12,500 a month.

Ramatlhodi said the state needed a legal mechanism to activate if parties failed to reach a settlement and the strike inflicted serious damage to the economy.

He said he will meet with the ANC's subcommittee to discuss the economy on Monday.

This is where his new proposal will be discussed.

"We'll be looking at elements of the bill that have to do with procedure."

Ramatlhodi added the committee will look at simplifying some areas of the bill.

"We'll also be looking at the economy and what has to be done."

The minister said he's confident Amcu and platinum bosses will sign an agreement by Monday and that both sides indicated they're on the brink of a settlement.