Ex-Old Nic Mine work­ers owed 15 months salaries

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Business Chronicle - Nqo­bile Tshili

FOR­MER Old Nic Mine work­ers in Bu­l­awayo’s Killarney sub­urb yes­ter­day camped out­side the com­pany’s premises de­mand­ing their 15 months out­stand­ing salaries.

Fol­low­ing a di­rec­tive by Zesa to re­duce its power con­sump­tion by 25 per­cent, the mine shut down last Novem­ber leav­ing over 200 peo­ple job­less.

The work­ers whose griev­ances range from non­pay­ment of out­stand­ing salaries to poor hy­gienic en­vi­ron­ment at the mine’s com­pound said they would not go any­where un­less they are paid their dues first.

They ac­cused the com­pany’s man­age­ment of call­ing po­lice on them in­stead of pay­ing them their

ONE of our in­stal­ments un­der the title, ‘Stock mar­ket not an ideal in­vest­ment’ elicited a num­ber of re­sponses from our read­ers, some agree­ing with us oth­ers dif­fer­ing. Be­low we pub­lish one of the re­sponses from our read­ers, a res­i­dent an­a­lyst and stock­bro­ker

While the ar­ti­cle touched on a num­ber of very critical and per­ti­nent is­sues, I think it can be mis­lead­ing. The stock mar­ket like any in­vest­ment does carry its own unique risks, and benefits, which must be un­der­stood be­fore un­der­tak­ing the in­vest­ment. A blan­ket ‘not ideal in­vest­ment’ ap­proach is in­cor­rect, in my view. The writer touched on one as­pect of the stock mar­ket; I would like to how­ever agree with him on: In­vest­ing in the stock mar­ket has gen­er­ally been kept as a pre­serve of the ‘learned’ among us. This has seen a num­ber of myths and fal­la­cies be­ing ped­dled around re­sult­ing in in­cor­rect de­ci­sions be­ing reached and con­clu­sions made. In­vest­ing in the stock mar­ket is not a pre­serve of the rich or the well-up, but anyone (re­tail or in­sti­tu­tional) can do that as long as the process, risks, benefits, etc is ex­plained clearly to them.

I will pick on a few points the writer dwelled on and ex­plain a bit more;

You in­vest for share ap­pre­ci­a­tion Capital ap­pre­ci­a­tion is one of the main rea­sons why in­vestors in­vest in shares. In sim­ple terms, this is an in­crease in the value of an as­set based on an in­crease in the un­der­ly­ing as­set’s mar­ket price. An ex­am­ple is when you buy a share for a $1 and you sell it a higher price, say $1.50 later on. The changes in a com­pany’s share price are af­fected by a num­ber of macro and mi­cro is­sues, chiefly the broader eco­nomic en­vi­ron­ment. As the ar­ti­cle right­fully noted, for over two years now the Zim­babwe Stock Ex­change has been on a down­ward spi­ral re­sult­ing in the two ma­jor in­dices be­ing used to mea­sure per­for­mance re­main­ing in the red.

How­ever, this does not mean that over the stated pe­riod no gains were recorded in the mar­ket. This is a mea­sure of over­all Zim­babwe Stock Ex­change (ZSE) per­for­mance, not in­di­vid­ual com­pa­nies. There are com­pa­nies, and a num­ber of them ac­tu­ally that have reg­is­tered pos­i­tive re­turns over the pe­riod. The critical is­sue in eq­ui­ties in­vest­ment is stock se­lec­tion. The ZSE has over 65 ac­tively traded coun­ters which an in­vestor out­stand­ing salaries.

The work­ers told Busi­ness Chron­i­cle that they were seek­ing an au­di­ence with the man­age­ment not to be in­tim­i­dated.

“There’s no point in call­ing po­lice on us. We’re not vi­o­lent but we want to talk to them (man­age­ment) re­gard­ing our salaries,” shouted one of the em­ploy­ees.

The ex-em­ploy­ees said the com­pany has re­mained mum about their out­stand­ing salaries.

“We’re de­mand­ing our salaries that the com­pany hasn’t paid since shut­ting down. The com­pany was de­duct­ing 25 per­cent of our salaries be­fore shut­ting claim­ing that it was part of the mea­sures to en­sure that the com­pany stays afloat. But they closed the com­pany so, we want our out­stand­ing salaries to­gether with the 25 per­cent that they were de­duct­ing,” said one of the for­mer work­ers, Mr Ad­mire Si­ata­muka.

The ex-work­ers who are still stay­ing at the mine’s com­pound said they were fed up by the mine’s man­age­ment for fail­ing to ad­dress their con­cerns.

An­other em­ployee said schools were now send­ing debt col­lec­tors to them as they have failed to pay fees for their chil­dren.

“We don’t even know what to do. Schools will end up not ac­cept­ing our kids due to non-pay­ment of fees. We’re starv­ing.

“We don’t have run­ning wa­ter and electricity. It won’t be shock­ing to see us dy­ing of cholera. This place is very un­hy­gienic but where will we go?” said an­other em­ployee.

A com­ment could not be ob­tained from Old Nic Mine man­age­ment who or­dered one of the se­cu­rity guards to bar a Busi­ness Chron­i­cle crew from en­ter­ing the com­pany’s premises. — @nqot­shili

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