Parliament’s Portfolio Committee on Mineral Resources says it is gravely concerned about the plight of workers at the Optimum coal mine in Mpumalanga.

Workers are on strike at the Gupta linked mine over not being paid their salaries. This follows the withdrawal of the Bank of Baroda from South Africa.

The Indian bank had been handling the Guptas’ accounts. The Committee says it is in receipt of a letter from the National Union of Mine Workers requesting its intervention.

The Committee says it welcomes the commitment by President Cyril Ramaphosa that he is prepared to go to the mine to find lasting solution to avoid job losses.

Earlier, Optimum coal mine in Mpumalanga has informed Eskom that they commenced with business rescue proceedings on Monday. This after the Gupta-owned mine failed to meet their contractual obligations to supply Eskom with over 400 000 tonnes of coal per month – a move that has resulted in Eskom imposing penalties of R105-million.

Meanwhile the CEO of Optimum Coal Mine in Mpumalanga, George van der Merwe, has told striking workers that the mine is experiencing financial problems. He’s accepted a memorandum of grievances from workers affiliated to NUM – who are concerned about the future of the company, with the Gupta brothers embroiled in corruption allegations.

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