By ROGERS KALERO
MOPANI Copper Mine must recall all 11,000 workers who were sent on forced leave when management decided to place the mines in Kitwe and Mufulira under care and maintenance, the Mine Workers Union of Zambia (MUZ) has demanded.
The union also demanded that forced leave letters which were given to the workers be withdrawn.
MUZ President, Joseph Chewe said no job cuts should be raised by Glencore International at Mopani Copper Mines (MCM) as discussions with Government get underway.
Mr Chewe said the engagement between Glencore and Government during the 90 days must not even hint on retrenchments, as there are other strategic options available.
Mr Chewe said this during a joint press briefing with other mine unions at Katilungu house in Kitwe yesterday.
He warned that mining companies should not be quick to shut mines and reduce labour, but develop the courtesy of engaging trade unions and Government in times of stress.
Mr Chewe said mining companies should not become complacent when they make profits, but they also prepare strategic survival plans to sustain operations should copper prices fall.
“We are happy that Glencore has decided to rescind its decision.
“However, as Glencore engages with government on this matter in the next 90 days, we don’t want to hear discussions of job losses,’’ Mr Chewe emphasised. The media briefing was attended by MUZ General Secretary George Mumba, National Union of Miners and Allied Workers officials and United Mine workers union of Zambia President Wisdom Ngwira. Mr Chewe said following the decision by Glencore to rescind its decision, workers and contractors should report back to work.
“We are waiting for Mopani to meet us so that we can discuss various issues before our members can resume work.”
By ROGERS KALERO