‘NUM not losing members’

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IOL image frans baleni headshot INDEPENDENT MEDIA Frans Baleni, former NUM secretary general.

Johannesburg - The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) is not at risk of losing members at Impala Platinum's Marula mine in Limpopo following a wildcat strike, general secretary Frans Baleni said on Tuesday.

“It is a small number of people who were at the forefront of the strike. We are engaging with the company to address their issues.”

He said no formal demands had been presented to the union.

“What we heard is that they want Impala to extend the wage settlement it signed in Rustenburg to them in Limpopo.”

He said the strike committee that led the strike wanted to meet company management, bypassing the union.

About 2000 workers went on a wildcat strike last week, apparently demanding that the wage settlement reached in the North West platinum belt be extended to them.

NUM's rival, the Association of Mineworkers Construction Union (Amcu), sealed a three-year deal with Lonmin, Anglo American Platinum and Impala on June 24.

The deal would increase the monthly salary of the lowest-paid underground worker by R1000 in each of the first two years and by R950 in the third year.

The NUM is a majority union at Marula and it had signed a two-year wage deal at the mine.

The mine was not affected by the five-month-long Amcu strike.

Baleni said the tactics used by the strike committee were similar to those used at Lonmin in Marikana in 2012 which gave birth to Amcu in the North West platinum belt.

“We are engaging with the company on this issue. We have engaged with some workers and they returned to work today (Tuesday).” - Sapa

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