Third Gupta-owned mine fails to pay its workers

by Benice BurgerMarch 2, 2018

An employee at Shiva Uranium mine in Klerksdorp says workers have been left in the lurch after the company failed to pay them their salaries last week


Picture: SUNDAY TIMES

An employee at Shiva Uranium mine‚ a Gupta-owned company based in Klerksdorp‚ North West‚ said they have been left in the lurch after the company failed to pay them their salaries last week.

“We have not been paid February salaries. We were told that we would be paid on the 28th. This is very frustrating as most of us live far from work and are struggling to get money for transport‚” said the employee‚ who asked not to be named.

She said the company told them on Friday that the payments were delayed because it did not have a bank. “They also told us that they have an international bank and the funds have to be converted from dollars into rands and that the process takes long.”

They were also told that the delay was due to Eskom not paying the company.

The country’s commercial banks have cut ties with Gupta-owned companies — citing reputational risk — while the only bank that serves the companies‚ Bank of Baroda‚ plans to leave SA at the end of March.

“We know there is trouble brewing there. They are just not telling us the truth.”

She said most workers had taken leave since Friday because they did not have the money to take public transport or to put fuel in their cars.

“I do not know what I would have done had it not been for my partner‚ who has helped out with the kids’ school fees and other household expenses‚” the woman said.

She said the company had denied media reports that it was under business rescue.

“We have asked them if they are under distress and they said no. They don’t want us to take action against them and have threatened us with our jobs‚” she said.

Shiva Uranium is the third Gupta-owned company to not pay its employees. Optimum and Koornfontein coal mines have also failed to pay workers their salaries this month.

Workers at Optimum downed tools last Wednesday‚ saying they wanted to know whether the mine would be sold following reports that the mine’s owners‚ the Gupta family‚ could no longer be found.

Koornfontein supplies coal to Komati power station‚ Optimum supplies coal to Hendrina power station and Brakfontein supplies coal to Majuba power station.

 

Source: https://www.businesslive.co.za/bd/companies/mining/2018-02-26-third-gupta-owned-mine-fails-to-pay-its-workers/

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Benice Burger