Striking ArcelorMittal contract workers who are members of National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa  (Numsa) have picketed outside the office of the Indian High Commissioner in Pretoria.

Numsa Spokesperson, Phakamile Hlubi-Majola, says their members who traveled from Boipatong, in Vanderbijlpark, have been on strike since March the 12th.

Hlubi-Majola says the metalworkers’ union wants the Indian government, as the founding member of the International Labour Organisation through its High Commission, to intervene in the prolonged labour dispute.

She says they also want the Indian authorities to force the ArceloMittal company management to employ all the striking contract and casual workers permanently.

“What we are demanding from the high commissioner is for them to recognize that one of their own is complicit in the abuse of workers through Arcelo-Mittal in SA. Secondly, we want to remind the Indian High Commissioner that they have a duty in terms of the fact that they played a role as India in the ILO – a very strategic role by being the founding members.

She adds, “It is in their interest to actually intervene to say that one of our own company is involved in the abuse and exploitation of workers. They have got a duty to respond and to do something to put pressure on the management of ArceloMittal to do the right thing in terms of how they treat workers in this country.”