4 February 2013

South Africa: Impala Platinum Continues With Union Bashing

The Congress of South African Trade Unions in the North West province has learned with disappointment about the closure of the NUM office at Impala Platinum mines in Rustenburg.

COSATU has been informed that NUM office has been welded with steel by the management of Impala while the processing of membership verification is still in progress. So far there is a dispute as to which union is in majority in the mine and the matter is still in court.

For us as COSATU this is a confirmation that the company has gone on a total onslaught against the union and want to kill the NUM.

As COSATU we also believe that there is a political link between this action by Impala and the capitalist bourgeoisie to attack the alliance and weaken COSATU and the ANC in preparation of the 2014 national and provincial elections

COSATU calls on Impala to open NUM’s offices until the processing of membership verification has been concluded. Impala should also be investigated to find out how workers have joined the so-called majority union, as we are reliably informed that members were intimidated, misled and forced to join this union.

COSATU also calls on the Departments of Labour and Mineral Resources to investigate the relationship between Impala and this union, as it is alleged that Impala continue to support this union financially and otherwise.

The department should also investigate the conduct of Impala, as it has violated the labour laws and the collective agreements that exist in the company.

This is the continuation of what we have said in our statement - that Impala is leading union-bashing against the NUM and COSATU. It must be very clear that we are at war with Impala and that we will make sure that we mobilize members of the communities and our government against Impala if it continues with its union-bashing.

We are also warning workers who continue to be used by capitalists such as Impala to destroy the rights of other workers; what Impala is doing today to the NUM it will be done to them by the same Impala, which is undermining the rights under the labour acts.

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