Lily mine
Trade union Solidarity said on Friday that mineworkers at the Lily mine have not yet been paid as they were meant to. It is appealing to government to step in and assist.

This comes after the Canadian company AfroCan recently announced it would invest $11 million in Vantage Goldfields, the owners of the mine to help return the mine to operation.

“Initially, the transfer of the first payment from AfroCan to Vantage Goldfields would have taken place on Wednesday, 1 June; however, because payment is to be effected from Canada, the transfer is not yet complete. This resulted in the delay in workers’ April salary payout,” said Gideon du Plessis, Solidarity’s General Secretary.

Du Plessis added that, because workers had last been paid any salaries at the end of March, they were now experiencing further poverty.

“Moreover, a delay has occurred in the unemployment insurance’s processing of laid-off mineworkers’ payment, since there were no salary payments at the end of April and May. As a result, the company has to process the payments manually because it cannot be done electronically,” Du Plessis said.

During the week, the company and the business rescue practitioner have again engaged the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) in negotiations about the appropriation of funds. Du Plessis mentioned that workers’ emotions were running very high and that they were becoming desperate.

“Solidarity once again appeals to the IDC and government to treat the urgent request for the approval of funding earnestly and speedily so that 900 job opportunities may be saved,” Du Plessis said.