MOPANI Copper Mines employees marching during the Labour Day celebrations at Diggers Rugby Club in Kitwe
MOPANI Copper Mines employees marching during the Labour Day
celebrations at Diggers Rugby Club in Kitwe

About 1, 000 miners at Mopani Copper Mines (MCM) are likely to lose their jobs after the mining giant starter its voluntary retrenchment exercise.

According to latest correspondence from MCM Chief Services Manager KV Chitoshi and to the people close to the Development , the company is asking employees to go on voluntary separation or opt for early retirement.

The mining company says it wants to reduce labour due to high operation costs.

All Mopani Schools are not affected by the job cut exercise.

But National Democratic Congress (NDC) acting Spokesperson Misheck Moyo has condemned Mopani’s plans to downsize its workforce through the voluntary separation scheme.

Mr Moyo said job reduction is an old habit adopted by most business entities at this time of the year when unions are on their way to negotiate new packages for the workers.

“This is just a form of blackmail aimed at hoodwinking Unions who are being duped into agreeing to smaller packages for the workers. We want to implore unions in the extractive industries not to depart from their core business of speaking out for workers.

“I hope Mopani will not fall into such a trap of blackmailing stakeholders. Metal prices on the international market are relatively high. Therefore the reasons advanced by MCM to streamline its labour force are basic and not really convincing,” he said.

Mr Moyo said that there is no need for MCM to reduce its labour force at this critical period when jobs are hard to come by.

“We are disturbed with revelations that Mopani Copper Mines MCM on the Copper belt plans to downsize its labor force. According to correspondence, MCM intends to retrench at least One Thousand miners,” he said.

“This will be undertaken through the voluntary separation scheme at both the MCM Mufulira and Kitwe divisions. The reasons advanced by MCM to streamline its labor force are basic and not really convincing. The metal prices on the international market are relatively stable.”

He said there is no need therefore for MCM to reduce its labor force at this critical period when jobs are hard to come by.

“MCM has been a good investor throughout the years. This is a company that has remained stable even at the height when metal prices had plummeted. We are wondering why Mopani now wants to cut jobs at such a time.”

Mr Moyo said the NDC is urging all the unions in the extractive sector not to entertain calls for such job cuts.

“However, threats by mining conglomerates to reduce labor at this time of the year are not strange. We are fully aware that unions in the mining sector will soon be meeting respective mining houses to negotiate for improved salaries and other working conditions for its members. In such situations, it is common for most business entities to resort to blackmail so as to hoodwink stakeholders.”

He added, We urge Mopani Mines not to fall into such a trap. Mopani Mines is a good corporate citizen.As a party, we urge them to reflect on their plans which will certainly have far reaching consequences if left unchecked. We understand, that most mines have operational challenges. However, these challenges can be resolved ably through consultations with relevant stakeholders.”

“We further urge unions in the mining sector should speak out with one voice and ensure that no jobs are lost. It is rather strange that only one particular union is speaking out against the pending job cuts. We want to implore unions in the extractive industries not to depart from their core business of speaking out for workers.Workers should be effectively be represented by their elected representatives.”

Mopani Letter to Employees
Mopani Letter to Employees
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37 COMMENTS

  1. Nothing wrong with this, to stay relevant you have to avoid stating in one job, that is what my fiance’s parents once told me.

    You become versatile moving from job to job and you become indispensable.

    No sympathy from me. A lot of their jobs they are NOT needed.

    Watch the unwashed masses blame Lungu here

    Thanks

    BB2014,2016

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    • Extractive and manufacturing industries thrive on work experience and specialization.The longer you retain a labour force possessing these skill traits, the more efficient the plant will be.
      However, Mopani cant achieve this because the PF and ECL are taking funds needed for operations to pay off nkongole to China and support their lavish lifestyles.
      To keep the operation viable cut the labour force and save money.

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    • Looks like most people on this forum including LT editors did not read the memo from Mopani. It’s not the company which is asking people to be retrenched, EMPLOYEES ARE APPLYING TO VOLUNTARILY LEAVE EMPLOYMENT OR RETIRE EARLY AT 55 YEARS. It is OPTIONAL and no one is being forced out. That’s why Mopani are saying some applications may not be accepted. Please read through carefully, don’t just rush to comment based on a misleading headline.

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    • Take early retirement and get the cash. Use half if to buy shares in ZCCM-IH and now you’re not just a miner but a shareholder in every mining operation in the country.

      Then use a quarter of it to start your own business, I mostly recommend farming especially in tomatoes and cabbage then the remaining quarter in livestock on the same piece of land.

      That’s a new breed of Zambian investors (shareholders in ZCCM-IH) assured of dividends and entrepreneurs creating employment for fellow Zambians.

      This is a good thing … for those worried about going it alone, form co-operatives and pull resources together. You will be amazed how good your livelihoods would be 5 years down the road.

      Let’s roll … What A Sweet Life ~ B R Mumba, Sr

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    • And by the way use your excess cash from your farming and livestock activities to buy more shares every year and by the time you retire you all will be millionaires in US Dollars!

      I guarantee it!!! Let’s roll

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    • I agree with Mushota. There is absolutely nothing wrong here; these redundant workers can look for a job elsewhere, or go in business. And of course losing a job really scares the sh!t out of them…

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    • Let them pay their due taxes.
      Government should not back down.

      Too much thieving in the mining sector.
      Rock that ship.

      I am watching. Meanwhile a voluntary separation act is so sweet

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    • Dununa, no law, no order, no stability, no tooth to bite, NGO – Nothing Going On. Go on dancing reverse.

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  2. Its an old tactic that cant work today. Each time Government wants to effect reasonable taxes for the mines to pay their share from our rich mineral resources, these miners or the so called investors rush to declaring our people redundant. Am sure that even the miners now know that its these miners who not sincere in the way they conduct their business and NOT a problem with Government. We there ask no one to politicize this matter because its common knowledge that government only wants to get the fair share of mineral resources in form of reasonable taxes to support the many social economic undertakings.
    Commodity prices, especially copper have been relatively stable and high and there is no compelling reasons these mine owners would advance to justify their claims.
    Government must…

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  3. contd
    Government must not allow this to happen and also the 2019 budget tax measures announced by government must be STRICTLY adhered to. Therefore no opposition politician especially HH must blame government on this issue but instead support what government is doing to ensure Zambians get whats due to them from mineral taxes and our treasury gets beefed up.

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  4. I wish P.F. could continue even beyond 2021 so that all threads of employment that has remained from the days of MMD will be completely wiped out. PF is a Paya Worker Party. I do not know when Zambians will finally work up from this CURSE that has hit Zambia since 2011.

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  5. Extractive and manufacturing industries thrive on work experience and specialization.The longer you retain a labour force possessing these skill traits, the more efficient the plant will be.
    However, Mopani cant achieve this because the PF and ECL are taking funds needed for operations to pay off nkongole to China and support their lavish lifestyles.
    To keep the operation viable cut the labour force and save money.

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    • Blind hate!
      People, please read carefully and flee from hate, mischief and jealous.
      LT through this article has sought to misrepresent the facts on the matter. if you read the attached internal memorandum, you will learn that Mopani is responding to applications or queries by employees wishing to take early retirement. Again, approval to proceed on early retirement is subject to the company rules that only areas with surplus labour requirements will be considered. Where LT got the 1000 as possible retrenchees only LT can tell.
      I can bet this rumour must have been started by this NDC fellow who inadvertently is exposing his ignorance. The cost structure of copper production is such that Labour and contractors are the two components vulnerable to reduction. Labour mainly because of…

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  6. Iwe ka Mushota, people are losing their jobs and you comment such none sense, you think every one will get married to old people or grand fathers like most of you b!cthes do,old skin and lose balls, using [email protected] as a source of income, you fcuken cant even write a sentence in English ati PHD!!! PHD in stupidity

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  7. This sounds bad and ugly to read. In Africa setup losing employment is like losing a beloved family member.

    And am waiting for comment from UPND because are the ONES SUPPORTING LOOTING OF IMPERIALISTS LIKE THAT ON THE EXPENSE OF POOR MINERS.

    HH/UPND this is worth PROTESTING , HH SHOW YOUR PASSION AND SUPPORT FOR MINERS IF REALLY YOU MEAN WELL FOR ZAMBIANS.THESE MINE OWNERS ARE YOUR FRIENDS IN LINE WITH ANGLO-AMERICANS MINE CONGLOMERATES.THIS IS PLAIN FACTUAL.

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  8. I have heard that so far UPND MINIONS are condemning ECL on this matter forgetting that ECL is on record of ARGUMENT with these mine owners because of not being fair and trustworthy on their dealing. PF government is hated by mine owners because of asking fairness especially to the miners and taxes deals. Hope MUZ will put their feet down.

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    • PF government is hated by mine owners because of demanding campain fund contributions…..the clever mine owners make sure PF sign for things, like 40 years paying fixed electricity tariffs as signed by one mine for PF campain funds…

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  9. I see nothing wrong with this.It’s voluntary separation and not a forcing matter.If an employee does not want,(s)he need not to apply and their employment will be intact.There are employees who wish not to work beyond 55 years but want to pursue other ventures after retirement.

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  10. We are in the 4th industrial revolution, computers and automation by use of robots which are replacing humans in factories. The syllabuses in colleges and universities must be oriented more on teaching the entrepreneurship skills rather than that of having to look for a job and be a slave until you turn 60. For example the students must be taught how to trade in forex, network marketing, crypto currency trading, vitual intelligence, computer programing etc. Currently the crypto currency mining business is hot and people are amassing wealthy from no where. There in Nexus Global a bitcoin mining company from German that allows investors with a minimum of $25 to mine bitcoins for a period of 2 year and accompanied to it is a binary tree where people including me are making money from. You…

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  11. Why continue working for a company that does not need you. You are better off working where your effort will be appreciated, or doing your own business. Some Zambians like crying, even for slave wages, they will want to continue working for these foreign companies.

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  12. Early retirement its good, you get your cast full package and invest in anything and go to look for another job mu mine.

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  13. Its a shame that people I thought are learned or educated on this forum are actually not. This is the biggest challenge we have in Zambia. Because LT to has mislead you with the title, you just pick your gun and start shooting. No one is losing a job at mopani. Loosing means something is taken out of your possession against your will or without your acknowledgement. The memo above clearly states that its voluntary separation and only “for those employees who signed to retire at 55 years”. Meaning everyone below 55 years is not eligible even if he or she signed. Those 55 years or above but did not sign for the option are also not eligible. Muleishibako tuntu, Fyonse imwe UPND or PF, HH or ECL. Even NDC spokesman can’t read and understand.

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  14. The question is what happens if no one applies? Isn’t this how the redundancy process begins? Ask for volunteers first.

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