J C H X M i n i n g Construction Zambia Limited, a major contractor for Non Ferrous Corporation Africa Mining in C h a m b i s h i , h a s resolved to put over 2,000 permanent employees on a three year contract effective this June, a source within the mine has disclosed.
Casualisation is the the transformation of a workforce from one employed chiefly on permanent contracts to one engaged on a short-term temporary basis.
The source said all company employees will by this June 2016 enjoy the same conditions of services with those under NonFerrous Africa Mining Corporation (NFCA).
“Everyone is shocked by the memorandum that was circulated to all the workers concerning the development. The memorandum stated that all the permanent workers will be required to sign a three-year contract and that whoever is not willing to sign the contract should inform the management,” the source said.
The source said management had also decided to reduce the pay of each worker by half, adding that not all permanent employees would be retained. But National Union of Miners and Allied Workers president James Chansa said the union was aware of the development and that it was still establishing ways to help both the mine and the workers.
“As a union, we are aware of the development and everything that transpired between JCHX and NFCA in their agreement. NFCA gave JCHX a one-year contract citing less production as the contributing factor but as a union, we came in and advocated at least a three-year contracts so that people can see how they can settle and prepare themselves in case NFCA decided to cut operations,” Chansa explained in an interview. He said the union was still in touch with the two mining firms to come up with a lasting solution to benefit both the mine and the employees. “We are still in talks with the two mining firms and we just hope that the copper price stabilises so that production can increase so that people’s jobs can be saved,” said Chansa.
But when contacted, a plant operations official declined to comment, saying the matter was already discussed with union members.