Satawu mulls proposal

By Drum Digital
29 April 2013

Trade union Satawu is considering a bargaining council proposal to end a nationwide bus strike, it said on Monday.

"We are looking at that proposal and it is still being discussed with workers," SA Transport and Allied Workers' Union spokesman Vincent Masoga said.

"Workers must agree to the proposal, because we don't want it to backfire later and affect them."

Masoga could not provide details on the proposal.

Commuter Bus Employers' Organisation spokesman Barry Gie said the bargaining council's general secretary tabled the proposal on Friday.

"They [the unions] would have to indicate whether or not they accept it. If they agree, then there will be a settlement."

Gie said on Friday employers increased their offer from 6.5 percent to eight percent, across the board, for workers earning R23.50 an hour or less, and 7.5 percent for those earning more. He said during the talks unions reduced their demand from 18 percent to 13 percent.

However, Masoga said at the time the union had reverted to its former demand after talks deadlocked. He criticised deals struck between smaller unions and individual companies.

The Bombela Concession Company's Gautrain bus service, Mega Express, reached a deal on Thursday night with majority union the United Transport and Allied Trade Union (Utatu) for a nine percent increase, effective from April 1.

Utatu deputy general secretary Pieter Greyling said at the time workers' transport allowance was also increased from R35 a day to R45, effective from Friday.

"Whatever comes [out of] the centralised process will automatically be applied to this process, so that [our] people won't be worse off if there is a better deal."

Greyling said on Monday all members had returned to work.

"Gautrain buses are up and running," he said.

-by Sapa

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