Solidary seeks ConCourt's voice over platinum strike

by Trust Matsilele 0

Trade union Solidarity is set to approach the Constitutional Court in an attempt to seek the rights of its non-striking members.

The trade union’s general secretary, Gideon du Plessis is cited in some reports saying the union was putting final touches to the court papers.

(WATCH VIDEO: S.Africa’s platinum strike update with minister Ramatlhodi)

Johan Kruger, deputy general secretary at Solidarity told CNBC Africa that it was time to approach the courts to look for recourse for its members who are not part of the now five months industrial action.

“We believe the time has come now to step into the situation and act on behalf of our members who are not striking. The Solidary members are also bearing the brunt of this ongoing strike so we have decided to take the matter to the highest court in South Africa,” Kruger said.

“Our aim is to get a judgment on the fundamental right to work that has to be balanced with the right to strike.”

Kruger lamented the five month old strike now affecting not only platinum mines but other mineral related sectors and their families.

“We are already feeding about a thousand people related to our own members, that’s how dire the situation is,” he added.

Urging the government to act, Kruger said, it’s time for intervention from the highest level and government should take real leadership.

“We have made ourselves clear in many circumstances that another resolution should be looked at that’s why we have approached the constitutional court to break the impasse,” he said.

“The labour dispensation needs overhaul as you can’t get into a situation where the whole country is held at ransom over a wage demand that is not reachable.”

Kruger postulated that the judgment from the constitutional court will need to be enforced.

(READ MORE: Change in mining legislation may be on the cards: Ramatlhodi)

The ongoing strikes in the platinum belt poses serious threats to the long term demand of manual labour as companies seriously consider mechanising.

The three platinum mining companies have lost an estimated 21 billion rand in revenue.