The Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU) has urged striking Gold One mineworkers not to give their employers a reason to fire them and return to their jobs.
Union president, Joseph Mathunjwa, was addressing the frustrated workers who earlier this week staged a three-day sit-in at the mine, bringing operations to a halt.
At the centre of the demonstrations are calls for labour federation, AMCU, to be recognised as the majority union.
Mathunjwa has urged workers to allow the proper processes to take place.
He’s also shared his support for the workers’ and their demands.
Gold One Mine management says it will not inflame tensions at the mine by pushing for criminal charges to be laid against the mineworkers, who allegedly held about 500 of their colleagues hostage.
The mine has denied responsibility for the incident, while slamming the workers’ actions.
Police say a case of kidnapping and assault will be opened as they probe an alleged hostage situation.
Labour analyst, Terry Bell, has weighed in on the matter.
He says dissatisfied workers must be able to hold unions accountable.
AMCU’s rival union, NUM, is locked in a closed-shop agreement with the company, which workers say has forced them to stick with the union despite their unhappiness with NUM being in bed with management.
Bell says unions cannot be allowed to hold workers hostage.
Written by: Naomi Kobbie