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COSATU Today | COSATU Press Statements
Injury at paper recycling plan in Kimberley
1 December 2010
The Congress of South African Trade Unions in the Northern Cape has learned with shock and anger about the injury that occurred at the paper recycling plan in Kimberley.
A worker lost four fingers from his right hand and might not be able to use that hand again in the future. The reason for that is allegedly the fact that he was working a late night shift and there was poor visibility.
What is more shocking is the insensitivity with which the owner of the plant responded to this eventuality. It is senseless and inhuman for the owner of that plant to attribute that accident to the negligence of the worker.
It is common cause that the plant was shut down by the Department of Labour a week ago due to non-compliance with safety regulations. We are therefore convinced that the injury was as a result of that non-compliance.
Another disturbing fact is the continued employment of foreign nationals as cheap labour with the sole aim of maximising profits. We have learned that the injured worker is a Zimbabwean national whose documentation has expired last month.
We call on the Department of Labour to make sure that the law takes its full course in ensuring that the employee gets the necessary compensation.
We also want to call on our fellow workers from the African continent not to subject themselves to unbearable working conditions for the sake of jobs. They should come out and expose all forms of abuse in work places.