Protesting city contract workers take grievances to Cogta

2016-12-07 06:01
Msunduzi contract workers marching to the city hall on Tuesday. They demanded that provincial Cogta intervene on the issue of contract workers who are about to lose their jobs in the municipality. PHOTO: SABELO NSELE

Msunduzi contract workers marching to the city hall on Tuesday. They demanded that provincial Cogta intervene on the issue of contract workers who are about to lose their jobs in the municipality. PHOTO: SABELO NSELE

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MEMBERS of the South African Municipal Workers’ Union (Samwu) have escalated their fight against job losses with Msunduzi Municipality to the provincial Department of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta).

They have threatened to take the matter up with national Cogta Minister Des van Rooyen should the provincial department not respond to their concerns.

Samwu members marched to the city hall on Tuesday where they handed over a memorandum to officials from the department.

They turned to the department after no one from the municipality had come out to accept their memorandum two weeks ago.

The protesters called on MEC Nomusa Dube-Ncube to consider putting the municipality under administration.

“Msunduzi has about 60 councillors, but none of them was available to accept our memorandum. They need to either shape up or ship out,” said Samwu regional secretary Sibu Molefe.

The workers were armed with placards that called for Mayor Themba Njilo, Deputy Mayor Thobani Zuma and Speaker Jabu Ngubo to step down.

“Njilo the undertaker must fall,” read one of the placards.

Molefe said about 1 000 contract workers are set to lose their jobs next month.

“Yet Njilo is grandstanding about saving 350 jobs at Somta. There is a negative balance here,” he said.

Cogta was given 14 days to respond to the demands.

Cosatu regional secretary Chief Dlamini said the workers will make the city ungovernable should their demands not be met.

“We will govern this town ourself. We have been engaging with the employer for far too long. Now we demand change,” he said.

Cogta officials said the memorandum will be handed to Dube-Ncube, who will respond to the demands.

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