SAMWU in solidarity with NEHAWU

By Drum Digital
19 April 2013

The SA Municipal Workers' Union supports striking Nehawu members at Netcare and Unisa, Samwu said on Friday.

"Nehawu [National Education Health and Allied Workers' Union] has tabled reasonable demands in order to ensure workers are able to afford the price increase of basic necessities," spokesman Tahir Sema said in a statement.

"We encourage all unions not to back down from demanding a decent living wage and to ensure employers give the workers what is required to dig themselves out of the trenches of inequality."

Nehawu members at the University of SA went on strike on Tuesday after rejecting a five-percent salary increase offer.

Unisa's campus in Sunnyside, Pretoria, was closed on Thursday because of the strike, spokesman Martin Ramotshela said at the time.

Sema said the university had re-opened negotiations with Nehawu.

Ramotshela could not be immediately reached for comment on Friday.

On Tuesday Nehawu workers at Netcare also embarked on a strike. In January, Nehawu demanded a 15 percent wage increase, but Netcare only offered five percent. Workers rejected the deal.

"We therefore revised our demand to 12 percent as mandated by our members and the employer responded with a revised offer of six percent," Nehawu's spokesman Sizwe Pamla said on Tuesday.

"The negotiations continued and the union revised its demands to 11 percent, with the employer responding by offering 7.2 percent."

Netcare's group human resources director Peter Warrener said at the time the protest had not drastically affected daily operations.

"A small portion of Netcare's nursing staff, who had already received their increases, participated in the strike action... Where needed contingency plans have been put in place."

-SAPA

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