NUM is also currently in consultation with Khumani as the company had served the union with a section 189 notice in terms of the Labour Relations Act to retrench 250 employees. (SABC)
The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) on Sunday urged businessman Patrice Motsepe to intervene at the Khumani Iron Ore Mine in the Northern Cape where money has allegedly been deducted from employees’ salaries without their permission.
The NUM said in a statement it was extremely disturbed and worried that Khumani, a subsidiary of African Rainbow Minerals (ARM) owned by Motsepe, had "unilaterally deducted R500 from employees' salaries without consultation or agreement effective from November 2015".
The NUM "humbly requested" Motsepe to instruct the company to reverse this decision to deduct the worker’s hard-earned money without their permission. The money should be paid back to them as soon as possible. This after NUM tried to intervene and stop this deduction and we had failed," NUM Kimberley regional co-ordinator Lucas Phiri said.
The NUM was going to refer the matter to the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation, and Arbitration (CCMA) on Monday.
"It is very disturbing and disappointing to experience this type of an attitude practiced by this company and we are asking ourselves a question. Is Mr Motsepe aware of this practice, and what is his take if employees can still be treated in this fashion by the company his name is associated with?" Phiri said.
"It cannot be acceptable that the company will pledge social responsibility somewhere else, when the same employees who produce iron ore and build this company to what it is today are distressed and treated as if they do not participate in the well-being of this company," he said.
The NUM was currently in consultation with Khumani as the company had served the union with a section 189 notice in terms of
the Labour Relations Act to retrench 250 employees.
The NUM was still in consultation with the company and would fight tooth and nail to reduce the number of dismissals.
"The NUM is of the view that these mines doing business in the Northern Cape don’t have the interest of the community at heart,
particularly in the John Taolo Gaetsewe district, which is one of the richest towns with iron ore and manganese, but very poor. They just build empires somewhere outside town without investing back to the community. Social labour plans and other commitment are not being observed or implemented to the letter," the union said.
The NUM would mobilise members and the community to march against the Companies’ social injustice and to stop the retrenchments, as it had "become fashionable that when the business is not doing well or the commodity prices are low mineworkers are the first to be retrenched. It cannot be acceptable".
The NUM said it was extremely worried about possible job losses in the mining, construction, and energy industries and would continue to fight for its members because they were the most exploited in the world, the union said.