AngloGold begins process to sack 12,000 striking miners

GOLD miner AngloGold Ashanti yesterday started the process to dismiss 12,000 wildcat strikers, as they failed to respond to an ultimatum to return to work.

The South African bullion producer felt it was “left with little choice” but to begin dismissals for illegally striking workers at its West Wits operations.

AngloGold yesterday said it remained in dialogue with the employees, to whom last week it offered an improved pay deal.

It said that the strike at its Vaal River mines had ended, and all 12,000 workers there had reported for duty.

Around one tonne of gold production has been lost since the strike started.

AngloGold posted third quarter production of 1.03m ounces for the three months to 30 September, which compared to guidance of between 1.07m and 1.1m ounces, citing the continued labour unrest for the lower than expected output.

Strikes still continue to batter South Africa’s precious metal mining industry. Earlier this week Gold Fields dismissed 8,500 workers.

Meanwhile, the Farlam Commission of Inquiry to investigate the deaths of 45 Lonmin miners at Marikana is ongoing. It is expected to last about four months.