Chaos at Labour Department as staff stage sit-in

2013-09-17 00:00

CHAOS reigned at the Labour Department as staff staged a sit-in at the offices, locking out the public, until they had their grievances heard.

Members of the public spent hours in the heat waiting for help while the staff sang struggle songs.

A memorandum, making allegations of maladministration, cronyism, worker victimisation and intimidation against the regional manager, Sindi Zungu, was handed over to provincial office delegates.

The memorandum alleged that since 2006, when the manager assumed duties at the Pietermaritzburg offices, the department had experienced anti-unionism, “dictatorship” and an arrogant management style.

“The administration of salary deductions after the wage strike of 2010 remains an unresolved unlawful act by the Pietermaritzburg centre under the current regional manager,” read the memorandum.

Other issues raised in the memorandum include non-compliance with the health and safety act regulations — that since 2007 they have been working with leaking roofs and dysfunctional air conditioners.

Staff have demanded an investigation into their allegations against Zungu and a report-back in five days, until when she is placed on leave.

Samuel Nquku (64) told The Witness that he had waited for a long while yesterday morning for help at the department to no avail.

“I am not sure what will happen now as I was here to get the letter saying I am not employed. Their picketing is affecting my life,” said Nquku.

Scores of people were seated in the heat on the pavement of Langalibalele Street as they patiently waited for the offices to be opened.

National Education, Health and Allied Workers’ Union regional chairperson Skhumbuzo Mdlalose confirmed the demands.

Spokesperson for the department Nhlanhla Khumalo said, without giving details, that they held a meeting with the officials and the matter has been resolved.

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