VENTURES AFRICA – Following successful engagement with employee and trade union representatives over the past week, regular operations have started at AngloGold’s Mponeng mine – the world’s deepest mine – near Carletonville south-west of Johannesburg.The commencement indicates that all six AngloGold Ashanti underground mines‚ as well as its surface operations‚ are now fully operational.
AngloGold Ashanti said talks between its South Africa regional management and representatives of unions and associations in the intervening period culminated in the agreement by all parties to a set of guiding principles that will govern safe work and labour relations at Mponeng in future.
The pact was signed by the local branches of the National Union of Mineworkers‚ Solidarity‚ The United Association of South Africa and worker representatives of The Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union at a public meeting on 10 November. The agreement covers series of issues including: safety, freedom of association, transparency and honesty, respect for the rule of law, rejection of intimidation, effective dispute resolution and collective bargaining.
“This is an important set of guiding principles‚ drafted and agreed between AngloGold Ashanti and a diverse group of labour representatives‚” said Mike O’Hare‚ AngloGold Ashanti’s executive vice president of South Africa.
“These principles provide a good foundation for a constructive relationship in future which is essential for all stakeholders given the long-term nature of this business.”
Mining operations seized at Mponeng on November 6‚ after two underground sit-ins by a group of workers and some vandalism on the property led to management concerns that safe working conditions could not be assured. The workers were demanding monthly wage increases of up to 18,500 rand ($2082).