Lonmin Platinum mine management say they are ready for tomorrow's first session of wage negotiations. The CCMA has confirmed that it will start facilitating the negotiations. Mineworkers embarked on an illegal strike more than four weeks ago to demand a basic wage of R12 500.
Lonmin's Executive Manager for Human Capital, Abbey Kgotle, said, “We have been informed by the CCMA that the first session of negotiations has been scheduled for tomorrow at 12 o’clock and we are ready to commence with the negotiations. Now it is important, obviously, that a number of things are in place in order for us to start with the negotiations and one of those things was indeed that the employees return to work in order to allow us space (to negotiate).”
Earlier, trade union Solidarity made an impassioned plea to workers at the Lonmin platinum in Marikana in the North West to give wage negotiations a chance.
"Solidarity now appeals to the striking workers to comply with the requirements of the negotiations"
Solidary's Gideon du Plessis said, "Solidarity now appeals to the striking workers to comply with the requirements of the negotiations, to lay down their arms and return to work on Monday so that their demands can be addressed."
On Thursday, Lonmin and trade unions the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM), Solidarity, and Uasa, bar the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu), signed a Lonmin Marikana Peace Accord. Amcu insisted that they were not obliged to sign the peace agreement as they were “not party to the violence.” The argued that instead of the peace accord, “Lonmin must address the needs of the workers.”
Yesterday the union, however, raised the concern that it may be sidelined during the wage negotiations after it refused to sign the Lonmin Marikana Peace Accord. The union says it's still committed to achieving peace and stability at the troubled mine.