Call to end meter project

2009-07-22 00:00

MEMBERS of the South African Municipal Workers’ Union (Samwu) marched through the streets to the Pietermaritzburg City Hall yesterday to hand-deliver a memorandum outlining their grievances.

Reading out the memorandum to Msunduzi Mayor Zanele Hlatshwayo and municipal manager Rob Haswell, Samwu shop steward Themba Lyons called for the cessation of privatisation and outsourcing, saying it would put people out of their jobs.

He said they were disturbed to read about the municipality’s new high-tech water and electricity meter reading system in the media and called for it to be stopped.

Lyons said Samwu was calling for effective service delivery in all areas.

“Service delivery must be equal in all communities. Current fire services only cater for whites and Indians, not people in the townships,” he said.

Lyons said Samwu was against the casualisation of labour and said all temporary employees must be hired on a full-time basis.

He said the suspension of firefighter Mbulelo Majola was unjust and demanded his immediate re-instatement coupled with full pay. He said that Majola, who is also a shop steward, was being victimised and this did not sit well with Samwu.

Majola was suspended almost two weeks ago by then acting municipal manager Kevin Perumal for inciting staff.

Sources told The Witness that Majola’s only crime was that he requested that the fire fleet be upgraded and urged for additional fire stations to be set up in areas such as Northdale and Edendale. The W itness has learnt that Samwu was meant to have been consulted prior to the suspension, but this was not done.

Lyons said the municipality needs to stop protecting non-performing managers.

“When we are perceived to be in the wrong, we are quick to be suspended, but managers who are actually in the wrong … are protected,” he said.

Lyons said Majola’s suspension has brought the municipality into disrepute and those responsible must be suspended immediately.

He said Samwu was against favouritism, discrimination and racism and said locals should not be overlooked for positions in favour of those residing outside the city.

Lyons said they were told to expect a six percent pay increase and this was unacceptable.

“Workers can’t afford decent housing with the salaries they get. It’s difficult to be productive at work when you’ve slept in a tent all night,” he said.

Hlatshwayo said the municipality had budgeted for a 12% pay increase, but this would be discussed once council recess ends.

She urged the crowd to bring their issues to the labour forum in order for them to be resolved. She said those whose services would no longer be required to read meters would not lose their jobs, but would be redeployed.

 

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
/Sport

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.