South African mining union threatens strike

City A.M. Reporter
SOUTH Africa’s Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU) threatened fresh strike action yesterday, saying it would not hesitate if its members voted in favour of a walk-out.

AMCU members have already voted in favour of a stoppage at Impala Platinum over wages and the union will canvas its rank and file this week at Anglo American Platinum and Lonmin.

The three are the world’s top producers of the precious metal and account for over half of global output.

AMCU president Joseph Mathunjwa told reporters that a decision would be made next week.

“Yes, there will be a strike, if our members give us the go-ahead we won't hesitate to do that. AMCU is not a company, it doesn’t have a board of directors. We get a mandate from our members,” he said.

At Amplats and Lonmin, the union is seeking a minimum monthly wage of 12,500 rand (£700) for entry-level workers – more than double current levels. AMCU says that would be a “living wage”. At Implats the union scaled back its demand late last year to just over 8,500 rand.