Workers staged a march under the auspices of the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM), to the employers’ offices yesterday, demanding that the company’s temporary liquidation be lifted, as Blyvoor was never declared to be a company under “distress”.
The workers also demanded that Village Main Reef (VMR), the company that has been providing funding to the mine, disclose their financial performance over the past 12 months.
It was announced that at least 1 700 jobs will be at risk after VMR stopped funding the mine. Miners chanted liberation songs, with some hoisting placards reading “VMR must be banned from mining in South Africa. Away with liquidation”.
Speaking to The Citizen, NUM’s regional secretary, Mbuyiseli Hibana, said workers were given until October to appeal the liquidation of the company. “Workers were told to stop working on August 7 and that is when it became clear to us that the company is in trouble. We are discussing the way forward with our lawyers.”
Asked about the future of the mine, mine manager David Tshililo said: “I can’t comment. The future of the mine will be determined by the process that we are in.”
Upon signing the memorandum of demands handed over to the mine, Tshililo said workers’ concerns will be given to the relevant people.