Ajay and Atul Gupta File picture: Independent Media
JOHANNESBURG - Workers at the Gupta-owned Optimum coal mine in Mpumalanga are going on strike. They are demanding answers from management over the mine’s future, as its shareholders are on the run.​

Optimum workers say the mine is in a state of disarray and that suppliers have not been paid. Workers have reportedly also demanded answers from management about the future of the mine and the security of their jobs.

The mine supplies coal to Eskom, in a live interview with eNCA on Wednesday, Eskom spokesperson Khulu Phasiwe said the mine, "only'' supplied the power utility with about 5% of it's total coal supply, at R150 per ton.

Phasiwe said he was unaware of reports that the mine had already been sold, saying, "we are not aware of the mine being sold but if that is the case then in terms of the law the owners of the mine have to tell the Department of Mineral Resources who the new owners are."

Phasiwe says Optimum mine is still contracted to supply Eskom with coal and should that cease to happen, "there would be consequences''.

* This is a developing story