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Lonmin confirms Amcu majority

684 09-05-2013 Association of mineworkers and construction union (AMCU) president Joseph Mathunjwa with AMCU national treasurer Jimmy Gama during the media briefing held at Faircity hotel in Sandton today. Picture: Tiro Ramatlhatse

684 09-05-2013 Association of mineworkers and construction union (AMCU) president Joseph Mathunjwa with AMCU national treasurer Jimmy Gama during the media briefing held at Faircity hotel in Sandton today. Picture: Tiro Ramatlhatse

Published May 29, 2013

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Johannesburg - The Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) is the majority union at Lonmin's platinum mine, the company said on Wednesday.

“Today's court order does not preclude the company and Amcu from continuing with arbitration proceedings or from concluding a recognition agreement,” it said in a statement.

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“Lonmin continues to believe in the principle of an all-inclusive recognition agreement with all other parties as the solution to long-term sustainability in the industry.”

Amcu had about 70 percent of representation at Lonmin.

The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) used to be the majority at the Lonmin mine, near Rustenburg, in North West. Since its numbers had dropped the company gave the union until May 30 to leave its offices at the eastern and western mines.

However, the Labour Court in Johannesburg on Thursday ordered that the 90-day period, in terms of the National Union of Mineworkers' (NUM) recognition agreement with the company, would run from April 16 to July 16.

“Lonmin will terminate (the recognition agreement) on 16 July 2013, if by that date the NUM is unable to show that it is sufficiently representative in terms of the current recognition agreement,” the company said.

It said the NUM would be allowed to access its current office and transport facilities during the notice period.

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“Such an order vindicates our position to continue the occupation of these offices at Lonmin,” NUM spokesman Lesiba Seshoka said.

“The NUM has until the 16th July to recoup its membership at these operations.”

Earlier Lonmin spokeswoman Sue Vey said the NUM had several offices at several shafts, which was a privilege of the majority union.

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Other unions operating on the mine, such as Solidarity, only had one central office. If the NUM was not able to regain its majority it would then get only one office, said Vey.

The NUM's rival union, Amcu, now wants recognition rights as a majority union.

Lonmin and Amcu were busy discussing a new recognition agreement at the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA).

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Last week, Lonmin said no solution had been reached at the CCMA. The company had asked that the matter be resolved through arbitration. - Sapa

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