Mopani Copper Mines’ decision to close two shafts is creating tension between citizens of Zambia and government, National Union Miners and Allied Workers (NUMAW)
Furthermore, Police in Kitwe have denied mine unions a permit to hold a peaceful protest against Mopani Copper Mine over plans to close down two shafts, Mindola and Central due to lack of resources to manage them.
President James Chansa said people are rising up against the current government due to job losses being necessitated by mining firms like Mopani Copper Mine. He also added that despite assurances from Mopani Copper Mine of reducing the number of people to lose jobs from 600 to 252, the move has not settled well with miners.
President Changa spoke against Mopani’s move, citing how the decision has rendered the labor movement useless as well as creating unnecessary tension between the citizens of Zambia and the government of the day. As such, he called to the government to step in and stop Mopani from pushing through with its decision.
Speaking earlier, Mineworkers Union of Zambia (MUZ) President Joseph Chewe said the labour movement had planned to stage a peaceful protest against Mopani Copper Mines but were shocked to have been denied a permit by police. Chewe added that police did not give reasons as to why the permit to proceed was denied despite indications all was well.
Mr. Chewe also berated the closing of the shafts, which would result in the loss of 620 jobs for about 1,500 contractors. He questioned their decision following Mopani’s assurance to Zambians that they would consider the numbers and were willing to dialogue.