mining & energy

UASA: Why we must thank the honourable Zwane for AngloGold job losses

Tuesday, 04 July 2017

Statement by Andre Venter, spokesperson of the trade union UASA:

UASA attributes the notice given by AngloGold Ashanti of its intention to shed 8,500 jobs directly to the role played by the Honourable minister Zwane and his department in destroying investor confidence and shareholder value.
The destructive manner of issuing of section 54 notices and the unilateral publication of the new Mining Charter are examples.

Mines Minister Mosebenzi Zwane visits Harmony Gold’s Doornkop Mine.
In a somewhat schizophrenic intervention, the honourable Zwane has now ordered an investigation into AngloGold Ashanti’s reasons for closing down some of its operations. One can only wonder what spin he will put on it, the results if it shows the truth in respect of his and his department’s role in the status quo.

The notice served by AngloGold Ashanti will impact the West Wits District namely the Tau Tona/Savuka and Mponeng Mine’s and various surface operations which include marginal ore dumps and tailings storage facilities. In the Vaal River District Moab Khotsong/Great Noligwa, Kopanong Mines, various surface operations (which include marginal ore dumps and tailing facilities under Mine Waste Solutions) are also affected.

Although UASA is acutely aware of the prevailing economic challenges such as unfavourable commodity prices, we will leave no stone unturned to interrogate the reasons put forward by the employer. It is our contention that it will be short sighted to e.g. defer capital projects to save cost at the expense of an extended life of mine.

UASA issued numerous warnings over time about the potential implosion at AngloGold Ashanti (to no avail). We are now faced with the unenviable task of trying to save as many as possible of the 8,500 jobs affected and we will leave no stone unturned to mitigate the negative impact on the members and the South African economy as a whole.

The first session of the section 189 A facilitation process will take place on 14 July 2017 in Potchefstroom.

Credits: Editor at