Johannesburg: The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (NUMSA) has confirmed that at least seven workers have been injured after a furnace exploded at Fortune Steel in Nigel in Ekurhuleni on Saturday night.
NUMSA demands that Fortune Steel must be shut down immediately until a full investigation has been concluded by the DOL confirming that the environment is safe to work in.
It is alleged that the management refused to call the ambulance and attempted to transport the injured themselves using private vehicles.
According to the statement issued by NUMSA :”workers have not been provided with any trauma counseling. And to add insult to injury, the families of those who were hurt were not informed that their loved ones had been injured! NUMSA condemns the management at Fortune Steel for their cruelty and ruthlessness,” says NUMSA.
It is understood that employees were forced to go back to work shortly after the incident.
The Union has called on the Indian Embassy to intervene on this issue since the Fortune Steel is owned by Indian Nationals, saying the company does not respect the value of employees.
“They are also undermining job creation by importing labour from India. NUMSA invited officials from the Indian Embassy to receive our memorandum at the march on Friday, but they refused to attend. We are disappointed by their attitude,” says NUMSA.
NUMSA also expressed its condolences to the injured workers and their families saying a major lawsuits should be enforced against the Fortune Steel.