Amcu to hold mass meeting Sibanye mine to discuss protracted strike

Amcu is demanding a R1,200 a month salary increase with the National Union of Mineworkers, Solidarity and United Association of South Africa agreeing to R700 for the first two years.

FILE: Amcu President Joseph Mathunjwa. Picture: @_AMCU/Twitter

JOHANNESBURG - The Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) will hold a mass meeting at Sibanye-Stillwater's Driefontein mine on Friday to discuss their protracted strike.

Workers have been on strike for five months now over better wages.

Amcu is demanding a R1,200 a month salary increase with the National Union of Mineworkers, Solidarity and United Association of South Africa agreeing to R700 for the first two years.

It’s been five months since workers affiliated to Amcu downed tools.

Amcu president Joseph Mathunjwa is expected to address workers at the Masizakhele Stadium in Driefontein.

On the agenda, the way forward with the ongoing strike.

Last month the Labour Court rejected a request by the union to hold an industry-wide strike, a decision union bosses are planning to appeal.

The union has also called on shareholders at the mine to disinvest as a form of protest against CEO Neil Froneman

At the same time, Sibanye-Stillwater runs the risk of losing 6,000 jobs after it recorded a R1 billion loss in 2018.

Meanwhile, ANC president Cyril Ramaphosa said the government is on standby to intervene in the strike at Sibanye.

Responding to a question by a member of the public at a meeting in Sandton on Thursday, Ramaphosa explained that the government, through the necessary departments, wants to avoid a situation where the strike turns violent and chaotic.

“Government should never be seen to be dictating to either the union or the employer. We have set up a framework and we should work within that framework. I believe the strike will be resolved because the strike is having a negative impact on workers themselves.”

Ramaphosa was warned of a possible repeat of the Marikana Massacre should nothing be done to end the strike at Sibanye.

He was a non-executive director at Lonmin when more than 40 people died during a long wage strike.

The president has been criticised for putting pressure on law enforcement authorities to increase policing during the industrial action, although the Marikana Commission made no adverse findings against him.

(Edited by Mihlali Ntsabo)