Amcu may settle for less than R12.5k wage demand

The Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) has agreed to possibly settle for less than its demand of R12 500 a month for workers at Impala Platinum, the union said on Thursday.

"We have given them a conditional proposal to settle. If they can match it we will settle. We are waiting for the company to come back to us," said treasurer Jimmy Gama.

If the company failed to meet the conditional settlement tabled, the union would revert back to its initial demand of R12 500 a month.

Gama said the union's proposed settlement was reasonable.

Amcu initially demanded a basic salary of R12 500 a month for underground workers and R11 500 for surface workers, with benefits.

The Commission for Conciliation, Mediation, and Arbitration (CCMA) issued a non resolution certificate when wage negotiations deadlocked in October.

Gama said the union would also consult its members at Anglo American Platinum after wage negotiations deadlocked and the CCMA issued a certificate to strike.

"We have not decided on a date to consult members. We have 48 hours to give notice to the company if we decide to go on strike," he said.

Non resolution
The CCMA issued a non resolution certificate over the dispute on Wednesday, after the union rejected the company's offer of 7%.

Gama said talks with Lonmin would also continue on Thursday.

"We are meeting them today [Thursday]."

The R12 500 a month demand dates back to August last year, when rock drill operators at Lonmin's Marikana operations went on an unprotected strike demanding to be paid that amount as a basic salary.

In strike-related unrest, 44 people died – 34 of them at the hands of the police on August 16; and 10 people, including two policemen and two security guards, in the preceding week.

Amcu has become the dominant union in the platinum mining sector, taking over from the National Union of Mineworkers. – Sapa

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