OPINION

Mining Charter III: We're disappointed in DMR - NUM

Union says dept should stop tip toeing around transformation

NUM statement on the agreement between the Chamber of Mines (COM) and the Department of Mineral Resources (DMR) in court

The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) has noted with shock the recently reported agreement between the Chamber of Mines and the Department of Mineral Resources in court papers filled in the High Court, which "delays" the implementation or enforceability of the recently gazetted Mining Charter till the September 2017 court date.

We are extremely disappointed with the Minister of Mineral Resources who seem to buckled under pressure in court and conceded in the suspension of the mining charter and thus delayed the meaningful inclusion of employees and communities in this exploitative industry. We expected no less from the Chamber of Mines, whom we feel their actions have attacked every essence of transformation in the mining industry.

We will be consulting our legal unit to explore possibilities of challenging this court (order) "agreement" between the COM and DMR, as the transformation in the Mining Industry, affects all of us (especially employees and communities). The NUM would like to appeal to the Department of Mineral Resources to stop tip toeing around transformation and its constitutional obligations of redressing the imbalances of past. The first such act should be to deal decisively with all mining companies that failed to comply with the previous Mining Charter 2014 targets, thus suspending and withdrawing all those affected mining rights.

The mining industry cannot exist solely for the various deaths of employees through fatalities, polluting of water or infecting workers with silicosis amongst others illnesses. Transformation inclusive of workers and communities in the mining industry might be delayed until September 2017, but the NUM will ensure it is never denied for our members and hard working mine workers. Even if it means reliving the historic NUM 1987 strike, which ironically we are approaching its 30th Anniversary next month.

Statement issued by Luthando Brukwe, NUM Head of Transformation, 14 July 2017