Sunday, June 16, 2024

Mineworkers Union disappointed with Lubambe Copper Mines of Chililabombwe

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Mineworkers Union of Zambia (MUZ) President Joseph Chewe has expressed disappointment at the decision by Lubambe Copper Mines of Chililabombwe to surrender several of its employees to contracting companies.

Lubambe Mine recently made a decision to disengage 178 workers who will be deployed to contracting mining companies.

Mr Chewe has described the outsourcing of labour in the mining and cement manufacturing industries as a ‘cancer’ which required concerted efforts between the government and the union to end.

The MUZ President was speaking during the induction of newly elected MUZ branch officials from JCHX, AMSL and Reliant Mining held at MUZ Headquarters in Kitwe.

Lubambe Copper Mines last month initiated the process for some of its over 500 employees to apply for voluntary separation without engaging the government or mine unions.

“Some people say iyoo kuli ba contractor takwaba impiya takwaba tenure of security for workers.The people that can make that security of tenure is you and me when we come together. So when we say viva MSL all the workers must say viva. We should plan how to move as we serve the interest of workers.So this is the power that our forefathers fought for. When you go down this building ( Katilungu House) you will see a plaque written that it was opened as a workers house in 1974 and if you read what is written there. This building is dedicated to the sacrifice of the people who died at Nkana and Luanshya mines for us to enjoy this freedom to talk about our welfare. That is why I asked if anyone of you has been forced to join the union. No one has been forced to join the union. You have said it is a passion to service our members so that sacrifice that you see written down there which our forefathers made, they said shot me for the sake of the coming generations,” Mr. Chewe said.

“How many can sacrifice like that in today’s era? Very few. They said let is forsake our freedom and due for the freedom of the coming generations. That is how they achieved what we are enjoying today. So colleagues you are welcome to this induction. So we want you to say ba Reliant what do you want? We want all to march in one direction. There is a cancer that has engulfed the mining industry (subcontracting jobs),” he said.

Meanwhile, Mr. Chewe said MUZ is set to meet President Hakainde Hichilema and explain to him the current working conditions in most of the contracting companies in the mining industry.

MUZ President has told miners in Kitwe that his union wants to explain to President Hichilema what the workers in contracted mining companies were going through.

He said MUZ was very sure of President Hichilema’s help in securing jobs of miners in contracted companies once the union explains the situation to him.

Mr. Chewe said the union wants government to quickly set a minimum salary for the mining sector particularly the contracting companies in order to protect workers working the contracted mining companies.

He said there was need to set a minimum wage for workers in contracted mining companies and make it expensive as one way of stoping main companies from shifting to contracted companies, their responsibilities of taking care of employees.

Mr. Chewe has since called on the Minister of Labour and Social Security Brenda Tambatamba and her counterpart for Mines Paul Kabuswe to treat the union’s request as a matter of urgency and facilitate the meeting between the union and the head of state.

8 COMMENTS

  1. These challenges are emerging because we do not have real MPs the way we had MPs like Chrispin Sibetta or Ntondo Chindoloma in the past. MTSRIP. They were going to ask tough questions in parliament. For example they would have praised government for teacher recruitment but would have asked for the plan for the over 70,000 teachers still unemployed. I would imagine them asking if other respiratory diseases in the country could have gone down by wearing of masks, they were so detailed that I would imagine them asking if Ministry of health knew that people are wearing masks as neck laces or chin laces

  2. We Call upon all mine workers to strike. The upnd government is taking you for a ride. Rise up and demand what is rightfully yours. Hh undervalued your mines for his own gain, so what makes you think he cares for you

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  3. It’s a tricky situation. These people come here to make money and not please anyone. Each day they are planning any plotting on how to maximize on their profits. One company will change ownership several times in order to make more money. Unfortunately at the moment government cannot intervene as it has only a small interest through what they call a golden share. Looking at the current situation I fail to see where a solution will come from or how it will come. But we can.

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