South Africa’s Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) has resolved to push ahead with intensifying strike action at precious metals miner Sibanye-Stillwater’s (JSE: SSW; NYSE: SBSW) local gold mines.
Amcu general secretary, Jeff Mphahlele, tells The Northern Miner the union and the rival National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) met with Sibanye-Stillwater on May 2 for another round of wage negotiations, characterizing the company’s attitude as “arrogant” and “coming to the negotiation table empty-handed.”
“We are meeting again on Thursday [May 5] to look for a resolution. But on the other hand, the trade unions are intensifying the strike. We are calling for another secondary strike from all other mines, including the platinum workers,” Mphahlele said in an interview.
Both Amcu and Sibanye-Stillwater confirmed strike action had been ongoing at the company’s South African gold mines, including Beatrix in the Free State, and Driefontein and Kloof in Gauteng province’s fabled Witwatersrand Gold Basin. The three mines in 2021 contributed 855,000 oz. gold to the company’s production profile. The three mines employed about 30,000 people in 2021.
While rounds of wage negotiations are a regular feature of doing business in South Africa, the two mining unions and Sibanye-Stillwater have been locking horns for months now.