JOHANNESBURG (miningweekly.com) – The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) on Thursday said it was “extremely disgusted” by De Beers Consolidated Mines’ (DBCM’s) plan to cut its 2 236-strong workforce by 189 positions.
The union noted that 152 workers at the miner’s Venetia diamond mine, in Limpopo, would be affected, adding that there was “no rationale” for the company to do so.
De Beers on Tuesday said in a statement that 68 of the 189 positions might be reduced without retrenchments, by natural attrition from retirements and the redeployment of employees, while the remaining 121 affected positions were concentrated at DBCM’s corporate offices in Kimberley and Johannesburg, as well as at the Venetia diamond mine and underground project.
"The company must stop these retrenchments or face the possible closure of the mine. The NUM is not going to allow them to retrench,” the union said, stating that it would consult with De Beers.
“Once the 60 days of consultations has lapsed, we will issue a certificate to strike and close the mine. We are also consulting with the surrounding communities to join us during the strike," NUM deputy general secretary William Mabapa added.
The union also called on the Department of Mineral Resources to intervene and stop the “drastic action by the company that will leave hundreds of mineworkers in a dire situation”, as well as affect the surrounding communities in Limpopo.