Unlawful and Unprotected Strike at KDC East continues
Johannesburg, Monday, 3 September 2012. Gold Fields Limited (Gold Fields) (JSE, NYSE, NASDAQ Dubai: GFI) regrets to announce that employees of the East Section of the KDC Gold Mine (KDC East) on the West Rand in South Africa continue to engage in an unlawful and unprotected strike.
Approximately 12,000 employees are participating in the strike which started with the night shift on August 29. To date three night shifts as well as two day shifts have been lost.
It appears that the strike is the result of an internal dispute between the local branch leadership of the National Union of Mineworkers and certain employee groupings within the NUM membership, who are demanding the resignation and replacement of local NUM branch office bearers.
The senior leadership of Gold Fields' South Africa Region as well as the KDC East mine continue to engage with stakeholders, including local, regional and national structures of the NUM, with a view to maintaining the peace and finding an urgent solution to the problem.
Nick Holland, CEO of Gold Fields, called on all stakeholders to place the safety and security of employees ahead of any partisan interests and to engage in good faith with a view to finding a peaceful solution. "The safety of our people is our first priority and we appeal to all stakeholders to continue to act with restraint," he said.
Gold Fields has been granted an urgent interdict to bring the unlawful and unprotected strike to an end. Peter Turner, Executive Vice President and Head of Gold Fields' South Africa Region, explained: "While we have the right to proceed with the implementation of the interdict, our preference at this stage is to assist the NUM leadership to resolve their internal conflict peacefully and in a manner that would not put at risk the employment and livelihoods of 12,000 people, who are our employees and their members," Turner said.
Holland added: "We are giving this issue the highest priority and have asked the Department of Mineral Resources (DMR) and the national leadership of the NUM to assist us in facilitating a solution.
"The current situation calls for bold and exceptional leadership from all stakeholders," he added.
There have been inaccurate reports that the ongoing strike is as a consequence of the unilateral implementation by the Company of a funeral policy scheme. This is completely devoid of truth.
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