NUM members to strike at De Beers

[] — THE National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) on Friday planned to strike at diamond giant De Beers’ South African operations, said I-Net Bridge in a report.

The Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration has issued the trade
union with a certificate of non-resolution to the wage dispute between it and the
diamond giant, the news agency said.

However, De Beers said in a separate statement that no such certificate had been issued.

“De Beers confirms that it is currently in negotiation in the CCMA with the NUM. It is therefore a fact that no certificate of non-resolution has been issued to it by the CCMA,” it said.

NUM said it would on Friday morning issue a 24 hour notice to begin a strike on Sunday at all De Beers operations in the country which includes amongst others
Voorspoed, Finsch, Namaqualand and Venetia.

The trade union is demanding a 15% wage increment while De Beers offers an 8%
wage increment to its employees.

“We are not miles but world apart in terms of what the company offers and what
we are demanding,” said Peter Bailey, the NUM’s chief negotiator at De Beers.

Close to 3,000 workers are expected to commence “indefinite industrial action”, the
NUM said.

Said De Beers: “The company is confident that it offers its employees fair packages competitive in the diamond mining industry, and ahead of many other sectors in the economy.

“The company is keen to amicably settle the current wage negotiations without any disruption to the economy, or to the lives of its employees,” it said.