The EFF is honoured that we are taking this platform to speak about the conditions and remuneration of Mineworkers in South Africa.We know that generations of politicians before us have been afraid to speak openly about Mining, particularly on areas that threaten Mine owners maximum profits.We are here to change that perception and perspective of SA political discourse.
The mineral resources of this country belongs to all South Africans, and only through nationalization will the country enjoy a more democratic and socialized ownership and control of mineral wealth by all including workers. Because as things stand now Many of the people employed by mining and who do the hardest of the work are black people who work in the deeper underbellies of the earth.
The mine workers work under extremely difficult and dangerous conditions and are paid a very small salaries for their labour. The dawn of democracy has not really changed the lives of many of our mine workers in South Africa.Their remuneration and conditions of employment are disgusting to say the least.
An average Australian mine worker doing the same job as a South African earns at least ten times more.On average, a typical South African mine worker earns between R4000 and R6000 a month, while mining executives earn millions of rands per annum.
Many of these miners have lost self-esteem because of their inability to sufficiently support their families.A lot of them commit suicide because this challenges have become psychological to many of the mine workers in South Africa.They live under extreme poverty and their livelihoods are not sustainable.
So the problem is not that mines cannot afford to pay workers fair remuneration, the problem is that mining companies refuse to shed off their historical baggage, and still exercise authority to continue the pre-apartheid and apartheid project of enslaving Africans in these mines and rejecting them in the land of their own birth.
A historical attraction for mining investors in South Africa who have been exploiting our mineral resources for generations has always been
the availability of black cheap labour, labour that has been , and still is working and living in slave like conditions.
Madam speaker as our first motion in this house, we will like to recommend for resolution by this Parliament that we establish a Parliamentary Commission on the Remuneration and Working Conditions of Mineworkers in South Africa.
We propose that such a commission be set up to investigate the conditions of Mineworkers,affordability of R12 500.00 by mining companies,the impact of transfer pricing on the South African economy and come back to this house to table a report on issues that we should resolve upon. Amongst those is a resolution on a new minimum wage that should be legislation for all Mineworkers in our country.
Amongst the recommendations the commission should table to this house is legislation on what should be required of all Mining corporations, Privately owned and State Owned mining corporations, on the housing, sanitation, water, and healthcare requirements for all corporations to extract Minerals in SA.
This Parliament will be shocked to discover that most Mineworkers are paid below the agreed upon Minimum wage.Most of us will be shocked about the living conditions of Mineworkers.
We are raising and tabling this recommendation because it is evident that Mineworkers are not beneficiaries of Mining in SA. Mineworkers have a lesser lifespan than an average South African.
They as the Minister of Health acknowledged, are the second largest group infected and harassed by TB infection, which is the biggest cause of death in SA. They are the most vulnerable group to occupational diseases and accidents.
Majority of Mineworkers, mostly from the Eastern and Northern Cape are infected with occupational diseases they got from the Mines. They are treated like instruments which are used and when no longer useful, get dumped.
It can not be business as usual,we need to urgently in an unapologetic manner and radically change the living and working conditions of all mine workers including paying them a living wage not less than R12 500.00 per month.
Source : Economic Freedom Fighters