About 200 miners of the Dzidziguri mine have gone on a strike in Tkibuli region of western Georgia earlier today after the employer demanded they use the tunnel of Mindeli mine to reach their regular work site, which they say “takes too much time and effort”.
The miners said that the alleged reason for the change in route was a mandatory check of the apparatus miners used to descend into Dzidziguri mine.
Miners think that the company plans to reduce the number of employed people noting that “the new investor says it needs more than one month for the mandatory check of the rope, while earlier this process needed less than a week”.
Miners also say that the new investor, Steel International Trade Company, has not improved working conditions and has not fulfilled its obligations.
Some of the miners say that they will go to the mine and stay there until their requirements are fulfilled.
The new owner of the Tkibuli mines, Steel International Trade Company, fully paid the salaries of miners formerly on strike demanding back pay, announced Georgian Economy Minister Natia Turnava on October 1, 2019.
Back then, the new owner of Tkibuli mines also took on the responsibility of creating a safe working environment for miners.
Miners in the western Georgian mining town of Tkibuli stopped their protest on September 26, 2019 as they were promised to be paid their salaries on September 30.
Miners were protesting the fact that they had not received one-month salary from Saknakhshiri GIG, the former owner of mines.
The miners stated that the mines were “the only source of income” for many of the families in Tkibuli and demanded the government tell them whether the mines would reopen or not.
Work has been suspended in the Mindeli and Dzidziguri mines of Tkibuli since July 16, 2018 after a fatal explosion left four miners dead and six others injured.
The Georgian government invited German experts to study the situation in the mines and promised salaries and insurance coverage before the mines are reopened.
The conclusion of German consulting company DMT company uncovered safety violations in Tkibuli mines and Sakhshiri was given recommendations to eradicate the issues one year ago. (Agenda/Ukrainian metal)