Trade union Solidarity has welcomed the position taken by Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe during the Mining Charter summit, held on July 7 and 8, that all employees below senior management level should receive equal benefits from the charter’s proposed shareholding scheme, regardless of race.
According to Solidarity general secretary Gideon du Plessis, the Minister’s position promotes nonracialism.
During the summit, Solidarity also called on stakeholders to avoid further legal action and to rather focus on reaching a negotiated settlement, as was the case in 2004 and in 2010 when Charter I and Charter II were drafted.
Du Plessis further welcomed Mantashe’s announcement that interested parties and the public would now have until the end of August to comment on the draft charter.
Public comments were initially expected to close on July 27.
Du Plessis further noted that Mantashe’s view that ongoing engagement between stakeholders is essential, together with the extension granted for the submission of comments “will hopefully nip earlier objections about insufficient consultation, from mining-affected communities and the Minerals Council, in the bud”.