The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) called for the Evander Gold Mine to surrender the mining licence to the government.
This was after the mine decided to continue with the retrenchments, irrespective of pending negotiations with the union.
Workers received letters on April that their last day of employment will be 26 May 2018.
1722 out of 1812 employees will lose their jobs.
Workers had a meeting on Wednesday, 25 April and some of them raised concern about vacating the mine houses as their children are still in school.
“Evander Gold Mine is currently constructing a plant with aim of refining the tailings and still make the profit while workers face poverty.
“The plant under construction had a budget of R1.7 billion. “If the company had used this budget to improve the aging structure as they allege, the closure of the mine could have been avoided,” said NUM Highveld Regional Secretary Tshilidzi Mathavha.
He further mentioned that Pan African Resources is a capitalist in their nature and its character seeks to maximize profit at the expense of workers directed resources to surface operation and neglecting the underground operation which will result in the surface operation being operated by contractors perpetuating cheap labour.
“The NUM would like to indicate that there is plenty of ore body which can allow the operation to run for the next 40 years.
“It is therefore irrational of Pan African to close down such operation where there is an opportunity to create employment in the country in trying to address the triple challenges of unemployment, poverty, and inequality that society is faced with.
“What is painful is the fact that Pan African Resources gave employees an ultimatum to vacate the company houses by the 30th May 2018 as they want to sell those houses,” said Mathavha also mentioning that it is painful because 80% of the workforce was drawn from all over the country and the neighbouring countries and they now reside with their families and their kids being registered at surrounding schools.
“The fundamental question is when Pan African Resources dismisses these employees from the company houses what will happen to the learners at this point in time?
“This, of course, proves that Pan African Resources does not care about workers who generated profit for them over the years.”
The NUM said they remain firm that if Pan African Resources can no longer be able to continue with Evander Gold Mines they rather surrender the mining licence to the government instead of closing down dismissing 1722 employees.
Mr Anthony Maki was contact to get clarity of what will happen to the children who are still at school and also to find out if they will hold their retrenchment to allow all avenues to be exhausted.
He instructed the mine receptionist to inform us to contact Pan African Resources Head Offices.