HomeNewsAMCU weighs in on Northam Platinum violence

AMCU weighs in on Northam Platinum violence

The Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU) in a meeting insisted that the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) was responsible for the violence at the Limpopo-based mine.

AMCU noted that this violent incident was not the first of its kind at Northam Platinum involving NUM against employees who are AMCU members.

In 2013, NUM marched against the appointment of Paul Dunne as the CEO of Northam Platinum, who was accused of allowing AMCU into the mine as he did at Impala Platinum.

AMCU also cited a January 2014 incident in which NUM embarked on an unprotected industrial action where a Court Interdict was sought but failed to comply with.

Although AMCU members did not participate in the unprotected strike, its members were barred from entering into the hostel, while management was negotiating with NUM for the return of our members to the hostel, which they failed to achieve.

Following the situation, AMCU members have not returned back to the hostel, which AMCU believes has set a wrong precedent that suggests that the hostel is only for NUM members.

Meanwhile, AMCU further suggested that management does not value the lives of its employees, particularly AMCU members, accusing Northam Platinum of creating an environment hostile to union competition.

Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane on Wednesday appealed to stakeholders not to engage in any conduct that would undermine the Framework Agreement for a Sustainable Mining Industry, particularly in ensuring the rule of law, peace and stability, after which the minister met with Northam management and addressed mineworkers on Thursday afternoon.

Operations have been suspended at Zondereinde since Monday following the killing of a Northam mineworker on Sunday in the town of Northam about 20 km from the mine.

This was followed by a subsequent attack on another Zondereinde mineworker on Monday.

No arrests have been made to date.

Chantelle Kotze
Chantelle Kotze is a Johannesburg-based media professional. She is a contributor at Mining Review Africa (Clarion Events - Africa) and has created content for the media brand over the past 6 years.