The Labour Appeal court last week reserved its judgement following the hearing of an appeal lodged by the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU).

The appeal was lodged by AMCU against the 2014 decision of the Labour Court in favour of the Chamber of Mines to uphold and interim order to prevent AMCU from embarking on protected strike action at certain operations owned by AngloGold Ashanti, Harmony Gold and Sibanye Gold.

The followed arguments presented by the councel’s for AMCU, the National Union of Mineworkers, the Chamber of Mines and the Minister of Labour on Friday.

The Labour Court in June 2014 confirmed the interim order following an application to the Labour Court by the Chamber of Mines, acting on behalf of its members, in January 2014 requesting the Labour Court to declare any strike action by AMCU on wages and other conditions of service unprotected on the basis that AMCU was bound by a collective agreement prohibiting a strike.

Speaking on behalf on the gold producers at the time, Chamber of Mines chief negotiator Dr Elize Strydom said the decision brought certainty about the binding nature of the 2013 wage agreement, which was in the best interest of employees, the industry, and the country.

“Historically, the gold industry had always conducted wage negotiations at a centralised level and the process had always been inclusive and fair. Going forward, we will continue to bargain in good faith with the elected representatives of employees,” she said.

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