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Mines fight back

Shakeman Mugari

THE strike which swept through the mining sector last week has set the stage for a serious battle between the Chamber of Mines and the mine workers’ union.

=”Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif”>The Chamber of Mines which represents mine owners this week applied to the labour court through their lawyer Beatrice Mtetwa of Kantor Immerman for permission to dismiss employees who took part in the collective job action.

The chamber wants the labour court to order “that the employers be and are hereby discharged from paying wages and benefits to all employees who participated in the unlawful collective job action for the duration of the collective job action”. The chamber also wants the court to discharge it from paying wages for the period of the strike.

It is seeking an order “that the employers, in their entire discretion, take whatever action they are entitled to under codes of conduct or under section 107 (3) (a) (ii) against employees who participated in the unlawful collective job action”.

The chamber also wants the Associated Mine Workers Union of Zimbabwe to be prohibited from collecting the workers’ monthly dues for November.

The employers are also seeking court permission to take legal action against the union.

However, the union’s president said the employers were being insensitive to the plight of workers.

Union president Tinago Edmund Ruzive told businessdigest that they were shocked by the submissions which the employers had made.

“The employers are really insensitive to our plight. How can they seek to have all the workers who participated in the strike dismissed, suspended or be disciplined?” said Ruzive.

“We were really surprised by the submissions they are making through their lawyer,” Ruzive said.

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