JOHANNESBURG – The National Union of Mineworkers (Num) Kimberley Region said it was concerned about the failure of Kimberley Ekapa Mining (KEM) to pay workers their full salaries and benefits.
Cornelius Manhe, Num Kimberley regional secretary, said that employees deserved to be paid their full salaries and benefits.
“What agitates us more is that they have paid their employees an amount of R3 500.00 only, irrespective of the category and further cut off their salaries by 33 percent. This is heartless and inhuman,” said Manhe.
KEM was formerly run as a joint venture with London-listed Petra Diamonds, which sold its 75.9 percent controlling stake in July 2018 to partner Ekapa for R300m.
“As if it is not enough the very same company which claims to be the messiah of the Northern Cape economy forced the employees to sign a declaration which allows them to further cut the employees’ salaries by 25 percent. This behavior does not start now, the very same company last year from August 2019 to October 2019 unilaterally cuts the salaries of the employees including benefits by the same percentage,” Manhe added referring to a 12.5 percent salary reduction across the board on its staff in an attempt to remain economically viable. At the time KEMwas experiencing major problems with illegal miners operating on its properties.
Manhe said it was disingenuous of the company to now hide behind Covid-19, while the government had placed various benefits in place as relief grants, which they arrogantly do not wish to access.
By Dineo Faku