Johannesburg - Trade union Solidarity remained the only union in the gold sector to continue wage talks with the Chamber of Mines on Monday.
“We want to confront the chamber and appeal to them to restore the principle of collective bargaining... We want them to make us an offer that will convince our members to not go on strike,” Solidarity general secretary Gideon du Plessis said, shortly before going into talks on Monday.
At the weekend, Solidarity said it believed the chamber was withholding a substantial portion of its final offer in order to have sufficient bargaining scope to achieve a settlement during a strike.
The union said one of the reasons it decided not to declare a deadlock was that the chamber met eight of the union's 10 “other substantive demands”.
Solidarity was the only union that remained in wage negotiations for workers in the gold industry after the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) and the United Association of SA (Uasa) rejected the chamber's revised offer and were issued a certificate of non-resolution.
The NUM wanted a minimum of R7000 per month for surface workers and R8000 for underground workers.
“We marched to (the) Chamber of Mines on Saturday and gave them seven days to respond. If they do not respond we will issue them with a notice to strike,” NUM spokesman Lesiba Seshoka said.
Gold producers represented at the Chamber of Mines said attempts were made to address some of the union's many demands.
“The employers tabled a revised offer of six percent for category four and five employees, and for rock drill operators,” said Charmane Russell on behalf of gold producers.
She said the offer would increase the basic wage for underground entry level employees to R5300 per month, and the living-out allowance to around R1730 per month. - Sapa