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Shabanie workers down tools

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SHABANI Mashaba Mines (SMM) workers in Zvishavane have gone on strike protesting against the non-payment of their salaries for the past four months.

Report by Blessed Mhlanga Staff Reporter

The workers downed tools at the asbestos mine on Monday when management reportedly told them the outstanding salaries would not be paid before the festive season.

“That statement triggered a sit in since Monday because workers want money for the work that we have been doing since August
especially noting that we are now facing the festive season,” said an SMM employee who refused to be named.

Munashe Mutanga, the chairman of the workers, refused to comment on the strike yesterday saying the dispute was internal.

“The problem we have at the moment is internal and as we speak things are getting back to normal. All will be sorted out soon,” he said.

But other workers who spoke to NewsDay vowed to press on with the job boycott until their demands were met.

“Management has been paying us $25 a month instead of $185, which the National Employment Council for our industry said we should be paid. To make matters worse, the last time we got the salaries was in August.”

The workers said most of them were afraid to speak about their plight because they feared victimisation.

SMM senior human resources manager a G Mapiye refused to comment on the problems facing the mine that was seized from businessman Mutumwa Mawere by the government.

“I am not the right person to speak to, but the only person you can talk to is not here and I don’t know his numbers or where he is,” he said.

“I am not confirming or denying that there is a sit in at this company.”

The mines have been facing viability problems after they were taken over by the government.

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