“The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) is extremely disgusted by Lonmin’s refusal to allow our member to go back to work after she won the case to be reinstated at the CCMA,” the union said in a statement.
According to union spokesman Livhuwani Mammburu, the female employee was dismissed in June 2013 after management and rival union the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) allegedly accused her of submitting fraudulent union membership forms.
“Our shop stewards were harassed last year by the company under the pretext of rigging membership, an allegation which NUM rejected with the contempt it deserved,” Mammburu said.
She won the case at the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation, and Arbitration and the award was issued in August this year, Mammburu said.
He said the employee was supposed to go back to work two weeks ago but management would not allow her. The company told her there was information that Amcu would not allow her underground.
The NUM was worried and concerned that a multinational mining company such as Lonmin was allowing the intimidation to happen, Mammburu said.
Lonmin spokesman Sue Vey said the employee had been re-instated.
“There has not been any point where she wasn’t allowed back at work. She obviously had to undergo medicals, and so on before she could return to work,” Vey said.
She said it was normal procedure for employees who had been off work to undergo medicals and re-training to ensure their safety when back at work.
“This is a requirement for the employee’s well-being as well as a legal requirement by the department of mineral resources,” she said.