JOHANNESBURG (miningweekly.com) – The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) would be issuing platinum producer Anglo American Platinum (Amplats) with a notice to strike at its smelters, either on Thursday or Friday, union official Steven Nhlapo said on Thursday.
Amplats operated three smelting complexes, the Waterval smelter, in Rustenburg, and the Mortimer and Polokwane smelters, in Limpopo.
Nhlapo told Mining Weekly Online that Numsa believed that all the strike conditions had been satisfied, stating that the strike should start on Monday, if all went according to plan.
Numsa had a range of demands that would be put forward to the platinum company, including a call for higher wages.
“For higher-paid workers we are demanding a 10% wage increase, while we want our lower-paid workers’ salaries to be increased by R2 500 a month,” Nhlapo said, adding that better living conditions were also being demanded, as many Numsa members still lived in shacks.
He added that the union would also be protesting the use of a scanner at the Amplats smelters that he said exposed the workers to harmful radiation.
“If the attempt is successful, more than 3 000 workers would go on strike,” Nhlapo said.