Marikana miners not so poor

The week of national mourning and the moving memorial
events at Marikana on Thursday, have been vital in bringing
calm, and a time for reflection and remembrance.
It has also created the space for unity. All stakeholders
agreed in ceremonies this week that it is time to move
forward and begin the gradual journey back to normality.
Lonmin’s management is committed to this process and its
absolute focus in the coming days will be to reach a peace
accord, under the auspices of the Department of Labour,
which allows for a peaceful return to work and an
environment in which the concerns of all stakeholders can
be addressed.
Simon Scott, Acting CEO, said: "We welcome the
Department of Labour’s efforts in facilitating the peace
accord and we congratulate the Department and all
participants in this regard. It is clear that everyone involved
wants to move forward. We are dealing with tragic and
challenging issues, and will be for a long time to come, but
for the sake of the Company, its many thousands of
employees and the industry which supports them we need
to find a sustainable peace accord which allows people to
return to a working business. That we are committed to
doing in the coming days."
The company has always said, and maintains, that it will
discuss the strikers’ demands in the normal way, through
their unions within the agreements which the company and
all unions involved have signed up to, but that requires the
unprotected action to end. It has never refused to consider
their demands.
The week of mourning which began on Monday, announced
by the President of the Republic of South Africa, and the
memorial events of yesterday (Thursday) have been an
opportunity for calm, reflection and remembrance. Lonmin
agrees with union leaders who spoke at yesterday’s
memorial events that next week marks an opportunity to
begin the journey back to normality which is vital for the
Company’s 28,000 employees, and for the country, and is
grateful for their call for the Company to be supported, for
the sake of their members. Clearly, achieving normality will
be a long journey given the terrible events of the last two
weeks, but without a return to work that journey cannot
start.
Lonmin, alongside the Unions, will continue to
communicate to its wider workforce over the weekend,
asking employees to report for work as normal on Monday.
The Company has also been asked to provide clarity on
wages after a number of conflicting reports.
In order to ensure that Lonmin wages are market related,
the Company undertook research to assess the wage level
in the industry. Based on these findings, Lonmin took a
decision to implement a drilling allowance of R750 per
month for the RDOs, a practice which occurs in the mining
industry. This brings the RDO guaranteed wage to just shy of
R10,000 per month and is in line with other industry
participants. In addition, the RDOs can earn performance
bonuses. The average bonus earned is R1,500, but some are
in the order of R6,000.
In the five years from 2007 to 2011, the RDOs were
granted a cumulative pay rise of 62%. This compares with a
cumulative 45% for level D managers and 34% for level E
managers over the same period. A complete salary
breakdown is shown in Table 1.

Table 1: Complete RDO salary breakdown
Basic
Pension
(14.83%) Medical Housing
Holiday Leave
Allowance
RDO
Allowance TOTAL
RDO R 5,405.00 R 801.56 R 556.00 R 1,850.00 R 450.42 R750.00 R 9,812.98

The Company also wishes to reiterate its long-standing and
total commitment to achieving the targets set for it within
South Africa’s updated Mining Charter.

The Mining Charter is a huge undertaking, and the sector still
has a long way to go, but we have said repeatedly that our
performance in this area is part of our licence to operate,
not only legally but also morally. As a company, Lonmin is
proud of its achievements to date:
Housing
We estimate that approximately 50% of people living in a
fifteen kilometre radius of our operations are housed in
informal dwellings with little or no access to basic services,
and suspect that this will include a significant number of our
employees who choose not to spend their housing
allowance on accommodation provided by the Company but
to live elsewhere.

The Lonmin human settlement strategy consists of three
elements: hostel conversion, the existing Marikana Housing
and the long term housing programme. To date, Lonmin has
invested R250 million on upgrading mining accommodation
and converting old-style hostels into new-style single and
family units, including the present FY2012.

We are committed to converting and upgrading our four
hostels to achieve the occupancy rate of one person per
room as well as converting and upgrading some into family
units and we plan to have converted our hostel space into a
cumulative total of 2,790 units (824 family and 1,966 single)
by 2014.

In 2011 we met our target, converting 26 hostel blocks into
542 bachelor and 104 family units and saw 179 employees
become owners of homes which were sold through the
Marikana Housing Development Company.

We have completed 1,728 properties to date. The provision
of mass affordable housing however will remain a major
challenge, but one we are committed to meeting.

Black Economic Empowerment
The Charter also provides targets for both Black Economic
Empowerment (BEE) and for Historically Disadvantaged
South Africans (HDSAs).

Shanduka, our BEE partner, has an 18% equity interest in
Western Platinum Ltd and Eastern Platinum Ltd. We are
committed to achieving 26% ownership by the Charter’s
requirement of 2015.

Human Resource Development
In 2011 we spent $29m on human resources development
programmes, including adult basic education training and
equipping young people living in the areas around our mines
with the skills to work for us. The Lonmin Artisan College is
a key part of this.

Our recruitment policy gives preference to HDSA candidates
and amongst permanent employees 46.5% of management
is categorised as HDSA, including white women.

Water supply

Lonmin has provided water reticulation in Oustad, which has
enabled yard connections for 407 households.

As we move towards calm and stability, Lonmin expresses
its appreciation for the support and encouragement that we
have received following the tragic events which occurred at
Marikana.

Statement issued by Lonmin, August 24 2012

Source: politicsweb.co.za/politicsweb/view/politicsweb/en/page71654?oid=321738&sn=Detail&pid=71616

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