Gold Fields workers in Ghana on strike

South Africa headquartered Gold Fields has been hit by what it calls an illegal strike in Ghana after workers submitted a long list of grievances including determination of profit share payments.

The JSE listed miner said yesterday action affects two mines, Tarkwa and Damang which are 90% owned by Gold Fields. Production at both mines was stopped.

The company said the action came after the Ghana Mineworkers Union (GMU) and its affiliates, the Professional Managerial Staff Union and the Branch Union, presented yesterday management at both mines with a number of demands, and threatened industrial action should the company not respond favourably to the demands within 24 hours.

Apparently the demands relate to a dispute in the determination of profit share payments to employees; the unconditional reinstatement of an employee who was dismissed following an internal disciplinary procedure; dissatisfaction with certain management structures; the removal of certain members of senior management; concerns about catering delivery models; and allegations of discrimination between expatriate and Ghanaian employees.

Gold Fields said it was analysing and investigating the demands as a matter of urgency. The company also appeals to all employees to maintain law and order while this process is underway as the safety and security of all employees is of primary importance.

The company holds the view that the industrial action is illegal and unprotected. This could expose participating workers to the no-work, no-pay rule as well as possible dismissal.

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