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VENTURES AFRICA – South Africa’s militant union, the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU), will kick-off its wage strike at JSE-listed platinum miner, Anglo American Platinum (Amplats), on Thursday this week.
The union will serve Amplats management with the notice for the strike this morning and will embark on the strike on Thursday, Joseph Mathunjwa, the president of AMCU, told public broadcaster, SABC News.
This will set off panic buttons in President Jacob Zuma’s office and the ANC with South Africa set to hold general elections in April this year. it is expected that major worker strikes like this could really negatively impact ANC votes.
The strike might also negatively affect the inflow of foreign and local investment in the sector, making it hard for the ANC to meet its promise of creating 6 million jobs in the next five years.
It is no wonder South Africa’s finance minister, Pravin Gordhan, entered the fray this morning.
He reportedly told SAFM, a talk radio station, that South Africa can ill afford this strike in the platinum sector.
He urged the platinum sector to seriously consider sitting down and discuss this.
AMCU was behind the 2012 strike at another platinum miner, Lonmin, which led to the death of more than 50 people at Marikana in the platinum belt in Rustenburg in the North West Province.