VICTORIA FALLS, August 27, (The Source) – Coal miner Hwange Colliery’s workers downed tools overnight but quickly reached a compromise with management over outstanding salaries.
The workers, from the open pit division, have not been paid for the past four months, and about 200 workers staged a sit-in on Monday evening, but management reacted quickly to address their concerns, an official said on Tuesday.
“We proposed a payment plan, which the workers accepted and they have agreed to go back to work,” the company spokesman Burzil Dube told The Source.
He refused to say how much was owed to the workers, citing confidentiality, but said the sit-in had resulted in lost production. Dube also refused to say if the arrears were limited to the open pit section workers or the entire workforce.
Workers representatives from the mine were unavailable to comment.
All outstanding salaries would be paid within two months, with part of the arrears to be paid before the end of this month.
Dube said the miner had experienced financial difficulties, leading to the non-payment of salaries.
Hwange employs over 2 500 workers.
Hwange has been operating at 50 percent of its five million installed capacity. In the full-year to December 2012, the firm produced 1.9 million tonnes of coal, down from 2.5 million previously.