Chinese-owned NCFA Mining Wednesday fired at least 1,000 miners at Chambishi Copper Mines for participating in a strike over wages, a union official told Dow Jones Newswires Thursday, a sign that tensions between workers and management is still unresolved several years after a dispute ended in violent shootings.
The management at NCFA Mining, a unit of China Nonferrous Metals Corp. (8306.HK), sent a memo to the affected workers Wednesday, telling them they had been fired after failing to adhere to an order to end the strike to allow the commencement of labor negotiations, an official with the National Union of Miners and Allied Workers said by telephone from Kitwe, Copperbelt province.
“Management has given the dismissed miners up to 48 hours to appeal against the suspension,” said the official.
Chinese-owned mine enterprises in Zambia have had stormy relations with local workers over labor and safety policies in recent years. In 2006, Chinese managers at Chambishi shot six miners during a wage protest. Last year, at least 13 Zambian coal miners were shot by their Chinese managers at the Collumn Coal Mine, in the Southern province.