Petrol strike talks ongoing

2011-07-18 14:13

Negotiations between unions and employers in the chemical and petroleum sector continued this afternoon.
The renewed negotiations began at 10am.

They had been scheduled for Saturday, but did not go ahead because the Chemical, Energy, Paper, Printing, Wood, and Allied Workers’ Union (Ceppwawu) declined to attend.

Ceppwawu coordinator John Appolis confirmed they were participating in today’s meeting.

About 70 000 workers affiliated to Ceppwawu, the Allied Workers’ Union and the General Industries Workers’ Union of SA downed tools last Monday, demanding a minimum salary of R6 000 a month and a 40-hour working week.

Solidarity joined the strike today, with the intention of adding a sense of urgency to negotiations.

Yesterday, Solidarity urged unions and employers to engage in “marathon talks” to end the strike and the fuel shortages it was causing.

Spokesperson Dirk Hermann said strikers were holding South Africa to ransom.

Sasol announced today it had reduced production at its Secunda plant in the interests of safety because of the strike.

In her capacity as Sasol spokesperson, Nothemba Noruwana said the talks were still continuing. Noruwana said Sasol was “optimistic that parties will do everything possible to resolve the impasse”.

The last meeting took place on June 24. The offer on the table at the time was seven percent, but unions wanted 11%.

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