[miningmx.com] — The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM), which has just signed a wage agreement with De Beers, on Wednesday warned the diamond giant that it would fight plans to retrench more than 350 workers at its Finsch mine in the Northern Cape.
The NUM said the diamond giant had issued an “irregular” section 189 notice
notifying its workforce of its intention to sack the workers.
“The diamond giant which has this morning settled its wage dispute with the NUM is now faced with an even bigger battle as the NUM intends to fight off the envisaged retrenchments,” said the trade union.
NUM’s regional secretary in Kimberly Tshimane Montoedi said a war was
“When De Beers engaged us, it spoke of unfavourable economic conditions
referring to the recession, but the recession is over now,” said Montoedi.
The NUM wants De Beers to revisit its strategy and reverse its intention to retrench the workers.
In the meantime, the signing of the wage agreement averted a strike at De Beers South African operations.
The NUM had planned to strike on Sunday last week but last minute negotiations with De Beers meant the strike was postponed for three days.
Originally, NUM demanded a 15% pay increase against De Beers’ offer of 8%.
But the diamond giant’s latest offer will see increases of between 9.5% and 10%