Johannesburg, South Africa — MININGREVIEW.COM — 27 October 2010 – Gold Fields Limited “’ the world’s fourth-largest listed gold miner “’ has been granted an interim court order blocking the planned strike by about 6 000 workers at its South Deep gold mine.
The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) had earlier announced that its members would strike at the mine yesterday after a dispute over worker involvement in the running of the company.
“Our main complaint is that the senior and top executive managers are mainly whites. We demand that there should be transformation at Gold Fields,” NUM spokesman Lesiba Seshoka told Reuters.
Gold Fields spokesman Sven Lunsche said the company would hold further talks with the NUM to discuss its grievances, adding he was optimistic there would be an amicable settlement.
“If they go ahead with the strike, it will be an unprotected strike. We will continue to engage the union to resolve the underlying dispute,” Lunsche added.
Seshoka also said the union wanted Gold Fields to change its procurement rules to achieve greater participation by black suppliers, but he gave no further details on the issue.
According to the government, only 8.9% of the country’s mines were owned by blacks in 2009, well below the target of 15%. South Africa has set a target of 26% black ownership of its mines by 2014.
Trade unions, the government and some industry officials have criticised the mine owners for moving slowly to achieve higher participation of blacks in the management of companies.