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SA Labour News

R400m of deadly Tongaat mall builder's assets attached in separate matter

eNCA reports that more than R400-million in assets belonging to controversial businessman Jay Singh has been seized by the National Prosecuting Authority.  The move relates to an investigation into four low-cost housing developments built by Singh in Phoenix, north of Durban.  The NPA believes Woodglaze Trading - one of several companies linked to Singh - fraudulently transferred the flats to social housing company, First Metro.  The raid was prompted after an investigation commissioned by the National Treasury.  The construction tycoon is also in the spotlight after the Tongaat mall collapse that killed two people last year.  Attempts to contact Singh and his attorneys were unsuccessful.

Amcu spends R4m on buses to get striking miners home for Easter

Buses organised to ferry striking platinum miners home over the Easter long weekend would travel to different provinces and go as far as Maputo, Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) president Joseph Mathunjwa said on Thursday.  Amcu members have been on strike since 23 January at the operations of platinum producers Lonmin, Impala Platinum (Implats) and Anglo American Platinum (Amplats) in Rustenburg, North West, and Northam in Limpopo.  At least 100 buses had been acquired at a cost of over R4 million to transport miners to their homes free of charge, following months of no work resulting in no pay.  Mathunjwa said local branches would be tasked with verifying the credentials of those boarding the buses to ensure they were Amcu members.  The miners are expected to return after the Easter long weekend.  A strike fund had also been set up by Amcu to assist miners' families to survive as the strike wears on.

Amplats and Implats offer to Amcu to double pay by 2017; Lonmin to make similar offer

platinumbarStrike-hit Anglo American Platinum (Amplats) and Impala Platinum (Implats) will increase the monthly wages of the lowest-paid underground workers to R12,500 by July 2017, the two companies said in near identical statements on Thursday after talks with the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu).  The union has led more than 70,000 workers in a strike since 23 January.  Lonmin will offer a similar increase, Charmane Russell, a spokeswoman for the producers, said by phone.  The offer of R12,500 covers basic pay along with holiday and living-out allowances (i.e. total cash payments), while other benefits bring the cost per employee to R17,500.  To reach the symbolic R12,500 by 2017, the cash elements of pay will increase by between 7.5% and 10% every year for the different grades of employees.  Other allowances would increase “in line with inflation”.  The companies could “ill afford the revised settlement offer,” they said in their statements.  “Labor costs account for approximately 55 percent to 60 percent of annual production costs and unsustainable increases in these costs will be catastrophic.”  Talks between the parties will continue on 22 April, Russell said.

ANC backtracks on clause in draft employment equity regulations

ancThe ANC has made a submission to amend a controversial clause around demographics in draft employment equity (EE) regulations, the party's provincial leader Marius Fransman said on Thursday.  "We have actually made a submission not to spike hatred between communities.  We've made a submission to correct that earlier clause, and that is what responsible leadership is," he told reporters in Cape Town.  He went on to say: "We've suggested that that clause can go nowhere because that clause will not stand the test of time.  What we suggested is that it must be a balance between national and provincial [demographics]."  The draft clause proposes that companies which employ more than 150 people would have to use national demographics for top and senior management, and those who were professionally qualified.  The labour department published the EE regulations for public comment in February.  Western Cape premier Helen Zille made it clear earlier this month that her government would oppose the regulations.

Web links to labour articles on Thursday, 17 April 2014

weblinksOur links page provides references to South African labour news articles we have come across on the internet on Thursday, 17 April 2014.  The list was most recently updated at 24h00 on Thursday.