Aerial view of the Two Rivers mine. Photograph courtesy of ARM
Aerial view of the Two Rivers mine. Photograph courtesy of ARM

The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) has signed an agreement with the African Rainbow Minerals (ARM) / Impala Platinum JV operation, Two Rivers mine to introduce an employee share ownership plan (ESOP).

According to an official announcement by NUM on its website, the ESOP is aimed at attracting and retaining employees and will fulfill employment obligations to employees in terms of the Mining Charter. The agreement was signed at ARM’s head office in Johannesburg.

NUM and Two Rivers reached an agreement on the content of a short-term employee empowerment scheme in the form of a cash benefit. The scheme will benefit employees permanently employed in grades A to C.

According to the announcement, the parties have agreed to a cash scheme for qualifying employees for the period from 1 July 2011 to 30 June 2016. Each qualifying employee who has been employed for the duration of the cash scheme shall receive a gross amount of a maximum of R50 000.

NUM deputy general secretary William Mabapa welcomed the scheme saying it will highly assist workers going forward.

“As the NUM, we have made some observations and found that most of our members, particularly in the mining sector are highly indebted. Most are being served with illegal garnishing orders every day,” says Mabapa.

He challenged the mining companies to come forward and assist in the auditing of garnishing orders or double check whether they complied with the laws of this country.

“It is our responsibility to ensure that we assist those workers in managing their finances. We need to step up the game and fight people tooth and nail who are ripping off our members,” adds Mabapa.

This agreement will commence on the date of signature and will endure for as long as the cash scheme has not been replaced by the future scheme.

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