Johannesburg, South Africa — MININGREVIEW.COM — 14 April 2010 – Mineworkers at Aurora Empowerment Systems’ mines at both Orkney and Grootvlei are continuing their strike action because of their claims that they still have not been paid wages owing to them.
Workers at Aurora’s Orkney operations are demanding their wages for March, according to the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM).
“Our workers downed tools a while ago in protest for their wages. It is almost two weeks that we have not been working here,” said NUM regional co-ordinator in Orkney Maja Mphahlele. He emphasised that the workers – like those at Grootvlei – would only return to work once they had received their wages.
Meanwhile, the NUM said some workers at Aurora’s Grootvlei operation on the East Rand were still waiting ‘with bated breath’ for their outstanding payments.
The NUM said Aurora had agreed on Monday to pay those Grootvlei workers who had not been paid and those who had been paid less than they were entitled to.
“However, given Aurora’s record of not doing as it says, it remains to be seen whether indeed Grootvlei workers will be paid,” the NUM said. “Our workers here at Grootvlei want their monies so that they can go home” said NUM chairman at Aurora Grootvlei Frasy Namanyana. “We have seen promises and promises, but delivery is not taking place.”
The NUM said a meeting had been scheduled for yesterday afternoon between Aurora and the NUM’s regional leadership.
The NUM also announced that it had noted what it called ‘the mischievous and misleading claim by Aurora Empowerment Systems’ that workers at Grootvlei would return back to work tomorrow. It said it had entered into no such agreement. It had agreed with Aurora that once the workers had been paid, parties would meet to discuss the way forward, which included returning back to work. However, Aurora had so far failed to honour its commitment to pay the workers.
“There will be no work at Aurora this week until workers are paid,” the NUM declared. “Workers have vowed to leave the company in droves once they have received their wages” says Namanyana. “We reject the notion that there is an agreement to go back to work as nonsense” he adds.