Friday, March 30, 2012

Mushala awaits official complaints from Kansanshi laid off miners

Mushala awaits official complaints from Kansanshi laid off miners
By Moses Kuwema
Fri 30 Mar. 2012, 12:57 CAT

BERT Mushala says he has only received one complaint of a miner who has been laid off for taking part in the strike action early this month at Kansanshi Mining Plc in Solwezi.

Commenting on complaints of witch-hunt by some miners following the strike action that paralysed operations and resulted in a $25 million loss, Mushala said he was still waiting for other miners that were laid off to approach him.

"I have heard of that complaint laying off and I have only seen one letter which indicated that the gentleman had been laid off for participating in the strike action. However, I did request to get the full detailed information of how many have been laid off because of the outcome of the strike action. So we are waiting for those that are affected to approach our office. As soon as we know those that are affected, we will engage Kansanshi Mining Plc and so far they also understand and I trust and believe that they will understand so that we can reach an amicable solution," Mushala, who is permanent secretary of the province, said.

Mushala further advised the affected miners to also make their complaints known to the Ministry of Information, Broadcasting and Labour through the labour officer.

"When they raise these complaints with our labour officer, the labour officer will immediately come and inform us. We are all government. We will see how we can resolve the issue amicably, looking at the pros and cons of the scenario and what caused it, before we even interact with both the union and the management of the mine," he said.

Kansanshi miners recently revealed that their management had allegedly prepared close to 100 letters on charges related to the strike action for employees in the processing, engineering, information technology as well as production sections.

According to the letters sent to affected miners by human resource manager Linda Mambwe, Kansanshi laid off some employees pending disciplinary hearing on charges related to the strike action blamed on delayed negotiations for the 2012 Collective Agreement which has since been referred to the Industrial Relations Court.

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