Construction workers march to Durban City Hall

2017-07-18 06:02
PhotoS: suppliedNum members march to Durban City Hall on Saturday.

PhotoS: suppliedNum members march to Durban City Hall on Saturday.

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THE National Union of Mineworkers (Num) has criticised the Department of Labour and its officials, for being ignorant when it comes to health and safety in the construction and mining sectors.

Num members took on the streets of Durban on Saturday as they marched against the increase of fatalities in these two sectors.

They claim there are many workers who have been killed in their line of duty and the Department of Labour is doing nothing to stop these killings as they are caused by the negligence of construction employers.

Addressing the workers at the march Peter Baily from the union said it is shameful and disgraceful that many employees are still dying in various construction sites due to negligence by their employers and the department is doing nothing about it.

“It is a disgrace that the Department of Labour is led by a black South African, who is doing nothing to protect his fellow brothers and sisters who are being killed by employers, who do not care about the health and safety of their employees.

“From January about 39 workers have been killed in the same sector, but the department has not done anything to deal with these construction firms,” he asked.

He also lashed out at construction bosses to stop corruption within the ANC.

“Price fixing is corruption. They must know that, but when we talk about the corruption they always point it out to the ANC,” said Baily.

He also said transformation is going at a snail’s pace in the construction sector and at the same time injuries and loss of lives is increasing.

The KZN Cosatu secretary Edwin Mkhize told union members they support­ the workers’ struggle because they have noted that the lives of a poor workers in this country are “treated like nothing”.

The KZN provincial chairperson of Num Staurd Zondo revealed that in the past four years construction and energy sector have killed a total of 276 breadwinners.

“We have noted that these fatalities in this sector have occurred in the province of KZN.

“The first one was at Ingula Pump and the second one occurred in Tongaat Mall which killed lot of employees.

“We therefore call upon this industry to invest more resources on health and safety to save lives.

“We are also saying they must put lives before profit,” said Zondo.

 

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