Johannesburg - Support for a gold mining strike that started on Tuesday evening was “overwhelming”, the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) said on Wednesday.
“There has been an overwhelming response to the strike,” spokesman Lesiba Seshoka said.
“The strike will carry on indefinitely until our demands are met.”
Employers in the gold mining industry were issued with a strike notice by the NUM on Friday.
The union rejected the final pay offer made by the Chamber of Mines.
Seshoka denied a report on Wednesday that NUM had dropped its wage increase demand to 10 percent.
“We are still at a (wage) increase of R2300 for surface miners, and R3000 for underground miners,” he said.
Surface workers currently earn R4700 per month and underground workers earn R5000.
This equates to a 49 percent wage increase for surface workers and a 60 percent wage increase for underground workers.
Seshoka said NUM had submitted the above figures to employers, and not a percentage.
Gold mining companies, represented by the chamber, offered a basic increase of 6.5 percent for category four and five employees, including rock drill operators.
An offer of six percent on the basic wage was made to category six to eight, as well as to miners, artisans, and officials.
In addition, accommodation allowances would be increased in accordance with the consumer price index.
The gold mining companies are AngloGold Ashanti, Gold Fields, Rand Uranium, Harmony Gold, Evander Gold, Sibanye Gold, and Village Main Reef. - Sapa