Mining & Industry News
05 July 2019

Marikana – Solidarity on 24 June confirmed that a coalition between itself, UASA and the NUM succeeded to obtain an urgent interdict against AMCU regarding an agency fee agreement signed with Lonmin to recover agency fees from employees at Lonmin’s Marikana operation.

The court also ruled that the agreement between Lonmin and AMCU was unlawful and that all amounts already deducted from employees had to be paid back to them.

This follows after AMCU and Lonmin had signed an agreement on 24 April 2019 in terms of which 1% up to a maximum of R200,00 was to be deducted from the salary of employees not belonging to AMCU. This agreement came into effect on 1 June 2019.

According to Anton van der Bijl, head of labour law services at Solidarity, this victory is the cherry on the cake after Solidarity, as part of the coalition, regained its organisational rights on 12 November 2018. 

“We are, of course, delighted with the ruling because our view that the agency fee agreement was unlawful has now been affirmed by the court.

This also means that all the hard-earned money already deducted from employees must be paid back.

As such it is a victory for all the employees,” Van der Bijl said.

According to Riaan Visser, deputy general secretary of mining, agriculture and cement at Solidarity, this victory is a confirmation that justice has prevailed. “The conclusion of an agency agreement has nothing to do with collective rights and strengthening of the AMCU power base; on the contrary, but rather an attempt by AMCU to beat with a stick the coalition of which Solidarity and its members were part,” Visser said.

“Unfortunately, AMCU’s unsolicited actions and abuse of its power base left AMCU and the former employer, Lonmin, with egg on their face.

We welcome the takeover by Sibanye and we know that AMCU’s unlawful conduct will not be tolerated,” Visser concluded.

Solidarity press release 24 June 2019

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