Johannesburg - Solidarity has become the second workers union to reject the latest three-year wage offer tabled by South African gold producers even though it admitted that the mining companies have presented a gloomy picture of the industry.
Solidarity joins the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) which slammed the wage offer as as a "pittance" and "insulting" to workers.
The Minerals Council South Africa, formerly the Chamber of Mines, said the mining industry was facing major challenges despite the gold sector remaining a significant contributor to the South African economy.
Solidarity's general-secretary Gideon du Plessis said that the Minerals Council gave a detailed response with regard to their demands but trade unions collectively rejected the council's opening offers and were disappointed that the council rejected most of their demands.
"The council even rejected demands which do not have any financial implications such as Solidarity's demand pertaining to worker presentation at company boards, a principle which is in line with the draft mining charter," Du Plessis said.
"In keeping with the tradition of the past few decades mine houses involved in the gold sector negotiations presented a gloomy picture of the sector's poor performance and weak prospects in their respective presentations."