No guarantee on wages as Gujarat NRE fails to pay workers

Gujarat NRE have again failed to pay workers their weekly wages and cannot confirm when the money will be available.

Workers were yesterday informed by the company that their wages had been delayed and “apologised for any inconvenience this may cause”.

The company, which run two mines in the Illawarra region, said that operations and cash flow was expected to stabilise after a general meeting scheduled for October 16.

“We hope to make the payments as soon as possible and to keep the delay to an absolute minimum,” the company’s executive chairman Arun Jagatramka said.

However when pushed today, a spokeswomen for the company could not confirm when the workers should expect their wages to be paid.

The Association of Professional Engineers, Scientists and Managers Australia (APESMA), which looks after around 100 workers at Gujarat, said employees should have been paid on Wednesday afternoon and had not been given any guarantee their wages would be paid next week.

APESMA collieries staff division director Catherine Bolger said the situation is completely unsatisfactory.

“They have told us they will not be able to pay wages this week. Maybe next week. Maybe not,” Bolger said.

“Getting paid is a fundamental part of working.

“Workers have the right to be paid on time. Gujurat is not living up to their responsibility to pay workers: they are being unfair in the extreme.”

This is not the first time the company has issued late wages to its workers.

Earlier this month dozens of workers withdrew their labour over the late payment of wages, with claims the company had continually failed to pay its workers on time.

A source close to the company told Australian Mining Gujarat had continually failed to pay its employees on time.

“People have mortgages to pay and kids to feed, it’s just not on,” he said at the time.

The man said workers had a meeting with the CMFEU to vote on any action that would be taken if the issue arose again, suggesting further strike action could take place at the mine.

“The general consensus is that they're not going to put up with it,” he said.

In further financial issues, workers at the coal mines have lodged complaints with the Australian Taxation Office over unpaid superannuation.

Reports have emerged that the coal mining company has failed to make any superannuation payments to its employees since March.

The company yesterday asked the union and the workers "to be understanding and work with the company to help them overcome these hard times".

“As we hear daily Australia is experiencing a mining downturn, the drop in the coal price and a hgh Australian dollar are all major contributors,” Jagatramka said.

"Gujarat is also experiencing these difficult times but is working to maintain its workforce."

Workers from both the Russell Vale and Wongawilli mines are attending meetings today to discuss the situation.

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