Precious metals miner Sibanye-Stillwater reported that 1 142 employees have been retrenched following the conclusion of the Section 189 restructuring at the Marikana operation, which it acquired as part of its Lonmin acquisition on 10 June 2019.
Sibanye-Stillwater embarked on the Section 189 retrenchment process after a three-month review of the Marikana operation, which necessitated the closure of three of its historic shafts.
According to Sibanye-Stillwater spokesperson James Wellsted, the final retrenchment figure of 1 142 employees was well below the initial anticipated retrenchment figure of 5 270, as a result of the transfer of employees to other operations, the acceptance of voluntary separation packages by employees, retirement and natural attrition.
In addition to the retrenched workers, contractors at Marikana were also reduced by approximately 1 709, while approximately 1 612 employees were granted voluntary separation packages, 166 opportunities for affected employees were identified and these workers were transferred to other operations, 53 employees proceeded on normal retirement and natural attrition accounted for 259 employees, said Wellsted.
As part of the Section 189 process it was decided that Shaft 1B and a specific sweeping and vamping project will continue with limited mining, sweeping and reclamation, until the end of December 2020 – resulting in the preservation of 329 jobs, provided that the projects continue to be profitable on a three-month average period.
“We are pleased with the outcome of the consultations with stakeholders, which despite the necessary closure of some end of life shafts, resulted in the preservation of a number of jobs. This will result in a more sustainable business which will secure employment for the majority of the Marikana workforce for a much longer period,” says Sibanye-Stillwater CEO Neal Froneman.