Traffic officers yet to receive payment

2009-10-20 00:00

DESPITE receiving an assurance that all payments for overtime would be settled by yesterday afternoon, many traffic officers have yet to receive the money due to them.

“We knew it wouldn’t come through,” said one angry Road and Traffic Inspectorate (RTI) officer. “Overtime payments only go through on Tuesdays and Thursdays.”

Yesterday, The Witness reported that Pietermaritzburg RTI officers refused to work over the weekend as many of them have not been paid for the overtime they worked in the past few months.

The officers alleged that the department has refused to pay their overtime because it does not show up on the duty roster drawn up as a guideline of the hours they are supposed to work for the month.

This is despite the fact that the signed attendance register and current book, reflecting the hours that these officers really worked, are checked at three levels of department before being sent to the costs office.

When The Witness contacted the Transport Department, it said that all payments were to be made yesterday and that “go slow” is a non-story.

However, when staff showed up for work, they were informed that an e-mail from the general manager of RTI said that “if” everything was processed on time, payment would reach them on Thursday.

“They can’t treat us like dogs,” one officer said. “They can’t say ‘come catch, come catch’ and not give us what they’re promising us.”

Senior Provincial Inspector Mthenjwa Khumalo, who is the workers’ trade union representative at the Pietermaritzburg RTI, said they are sceptical about these payments being processed because they were made the same promise many times before.

He said about 32 officers have not been paid to date, and insisted that they will not show up for work on weekends if the problem is not sorted out.

“It’s not that we just don’t care,” he said.

“We are made to feel that our jobs are not important to management.”

Department spokesperson Bhekisisa Mncube apologised on behalf of the department for the inconvenience caused by the delay in payments.

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