Turnout: ‘70% on average’

2008-07-09 00:00

Andrew Layman, CEO of the Pietermaritzburg Chamber of Business (PCB), said yesterday that as is usually the case in Pietermaritzburg, work attendance varied from one company to another.

“While one manufacturer has reported a 95% stayaway, another is without only 10% of its workers. On average, it would seem that the absence runs to about 70%.”

He said the strike appears to have been better supported than some previous strikes. “However, it is very difficult to distinguish between striking workers and those who are absent because they had no means of transport. Considering that some non-unionised businesses have had their activities curtailed severely as a result of the absence of staff, the effects of the taxi shutdown … have been profound.”

Layman said the PCB questions whether highlighting the problems of the high prices of food, fuel and electricity by this kind of industrial action will achieve anything constructive.

“The wages that strikers and perhaps others who are absent will lose as a result of the ‘no work, no pay’ principle will make it that much more difficult for them to feed families and meet other financial obligations.”

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