Blyvoor Gold mineworkers vow to halt operations amid fresh labour dispute

Over 800 workers at the mine staged a 36-hour sit-in related to the payment of incentives, while also calling for the closed-shop agreement with its in-house union, Blyvoor Workers Union, to be brought to an end.

Blyvoor Gold mine. Picture: Supplied/Blyvoor Gold/Facebook

JOHANNESBURG - Workers at the Blyvoor Gold mine have vowed to bring operations at the Peter Skeat shaft to a grinding halt amid a fresh labour dispute.

More than 800 workers staged a 36-hour sit-in at what's said to be one of the leading gold producers in the 1950s, less than a month after the dramatic Gold One Mine hostage drama in the East Rand.

The latest labour dispute is related to the payment of incentives, including bonuses for the upcoming festive period.

Workers also want out of a closed-shop agreement with the in-house union, Blyvoor Workers Union.

READ: Mineworkers at Blyvoor mine demand answers on plan to resolve labour issues

A brief meeting between shop stewards, the in-house union, and management on Thursday night resulted in hundreds of workers resurfacing from the shaft.

But it's understood the meeting yielded very little results.

Workers refused to back down, accusing Blyvoor Gold of reneging on profit sharing after the company skipped a R6,000 payout earlier in November.

They were told that the company was facing financial difficulties.

Workers have now also called for the company to terminate the closed-shop agreement with Blyvoor Workers Union, which has exclusive bargaining rights at the mine.

The National Union of Mineworkers wants in on organising rights and is expected to rally workers to cancel their stop orders in a bid to strongarm the company to recognise it.

Sources at the mine told Eyewitness News that the company might be in the process of applying for an urgent interdict at the Labour Court against protesting workers.

But there was no official comment from management on the matter.