New Zimbabwe.com

RioZim Workers Vow To Down Tools

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By Felix Matasva


AN integrated mining and metallurgical company, RioZim Limited’s employees have promised to go on strike early next year, if their grievances are not addressed within a 14-days-period effective from December 21, 2021, NewZimbwbwe.com can exclusively reveal.

The employees who have lodged their notice to down tools next year are from RioZim’s mining operations including Cam and Motor gold mine and Empress Nickel Refinery (ENR) both located in Kadoma of Mashonaland West province.

The Cam and Motor Gold Mine which is the second project in Rio Gold’s operations was once the largest producer of Gold in Zimbabwe.

ENR is symbolic of RioZim’s journey as it continues to be the group’s best performer, contributing 77% of the group’s revenue.

In a letter dated December 20 gleaned by NewZimbabwe.com Monday, Zimbabwe Diamond and Allied Mineral Workers Union (ZIDAMWU) general secretary, Justice Chinhema wrote to RioZim’s manager indicating the intention by its employees in Kadoma to embark  on a collective job action early next year.

The letter was also copied to National Employment Council (NEC) Mining, Labour Ministry Kadoma, Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) Kadoma and Workers Committee.

Chinhema noted that employees stationed at Cam and Motor Gold mine and ENR have engaged ZIDAMWU to write to the RioZim demanding their November and December salaries ahead of Christmas holiday.

“We write on behalf of our members at your mine, and on behalf of all your workers at your two mining cites, Cam and Motor and ENR, who have voted agreed and engaged us to write to you as we hereby do.

“We hereby give you 14 days’ notice effective 21 December 2021 of the intention to embark on collective job action as per requirements of section 104(2a) of the Labour Act Chapter 28:01. For avoidance of doubt, the collective job action shall commence on 5 January 2022, unless otherwise resolved,” Chinhema wrote to RioZim Limited.

RioZim Kadoma workers are chiding the integrated mining company for non-provision of PPE, discrimination on bonus payment, noncompliance with Works Council’s resolution and negotiating in the works council in bad faith.

Chinhema demanded RioZim to pay out arrears and December salaries so as for its employees in Kadoma to have a happy Christmas holiday.

“You would also note that the workers have not yet received their November salaries, and December salaries are already due in light of usual annual holiday.

It is paramount that the arrears be paid together with December salaries forthwith to enable workers to have a merry Christmas just like the rest of the Zimbabweans. This is not one of the reasons for the indented strike, but it is important that this issue be resolved forthwith,” said Chinhema.

Currently there is a deadlock confrontation in Masvingo province between RioZim’s Renco Gold Mine management and its workers over suspension of worker’s committee.

Renco Gold mine workers recently picketed as they demanded their November salaries as well as the 13th cheque.