Parliament lifts Nehawu suspensions, strike ends

2016-09-15 17:11
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Cape Town - The suspensions of two Nehawu-affiliated workers at Parliament have been lifted and the union's strike has ended, Parliament secretary Gengezi Mgidlana said on Thursday.

The suspended workers, including National Education Health and Allied Workers Union (Nehawu) branch chairperson Sthembiso Thembe, could return to their jobs on Thursday. Four others who had been facing disciplinary charges would receive written warnings.

“Today is a historic day for Parliament, and we are united in a common action,” Mgidlana told reporters.

“The discussions that were had were very fruitful, robust and constructive.”

All the issues Nehawu had raised at the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration had been withdrawn. They would be discussed between the two parties internally as part of a “package deal”.

“We will continue to talk about the outstanding issues in the hope of implementing the agreement.”

Nehawu-affiliated workers at Parliament went on an illegal strike last Tuesday, in protest against the suspensions of their colleagues and to call for Mgidlana’s resignation.

Mgidlana said Parliament had not deducted money from the salaries of those workers who took part in a strike in November 2015. The application of the no work, no pay principle would form part of the discussions.

Nehawu deputy secretary general Zola Sapetha said workers were happy with the agreement following “lengthy and tiring” talks. He said there was no reason for it to fail.

“I'm confident on what we have agreed to. There are also people responsible for overseeing the negotiations.”

Mgidlana said the intervention of Parliament Speaker Baleka Mbete and NCOP Chairperson Thandi Modise was critical in helping break the deadlock that had lasted more than a year.

Parliament's role would be to implement the agreements once discussions had been finalised with Nehawu, he said.

Read more on:    parliament  |  nehawu  |  cape town

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