Optimum mine searches for investors to avoid job losses

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The search for investors who can save the Gupta-linked companies and avoid job losses is on. This as striking workers at the Gupta-owned Optimum coal mine in Mpumalanga are back at work.

They had embarked on the strike two weeks ago after the mine failed to pay their February salaries.

Officials of the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) say they are pleased with the outcome of their meeting with Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe on Thursday.

Mantashe has expressed confidence that business rescue practitioners will be able to find investors to save Gupta-linked mines.

NUM regional secretary Tshilidzi Mathavha says this matter needs to be resolved urgently.

“Unfortunately with the Guptas, it is not a matter of profits. It’s a matter of money that is there, but they are not able to distribute that cash based on the lack of banking facilities. If that operation was run by people who have banking facilities we won’t be sitting in this situation. Therefore, there is a need for the Gupta family or Tegeta to surrender that licence to any person who will be able to come and run that business without any problems with regard to banking facilities. Hence the business rescue kicks in.”