Union considers proposal to end bus strike

2013-04-29 12:55

Transport workers’ union Satawu is considering a bargaining council proposal to end a nationwide bus strike.

“We are looking at that proposal and it is still being discussed with workers,” the union’s spokesperson Vincent Masoga said today.

“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 spokesperson 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% to 8% across the board, for workers earning R23.50 an hour or less, and 7.5% for those earning more. He said during the talks unions reduced their demand from 18% to 13%.

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 9% 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 today all members had returned to work.

“Gautrain buses are up and running,” he said.

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