Municipal strike on Friday

2011-05-10 00:00

WITH the local government election date fast approaching, municipalities across the country are gearing up for a one-day strike organised by the 220 000-strong South African Municipal Workers’ Union (Samwu), which is scheduled to take place on Friday.

Samwu national spokesperson Tahir Sema said the strike was prompted, among other things, by the deadlock in national wage negotiations between the union and the employers, the South AFrican Local Government Association (Salga).

The aim of the strike is also to reinforce Samwu’s call for Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister Sicelo Shiceka to resign and it is in support of Samwu’s call for provincial governments to be scrapped and all their administrative costs to be transferred to local governments.

“It is a small portion of a list of … demands that precipitated the strike, that have led to the coming strike. We are also protesting the fact that local governments across the country have failed society at large,” Sema said.

The wage negotiations are deadlocked with the union standing by its initial demand for an 18% increase across the board and Salga’s offer standing at six percent.

In an attempt to resolve the wage negotiations impasse, Sema said, Samwu will hold a meeting with the ANC in Johannesburg toda.

He added that meetings on Friday and Monday had failed to achieve an amicable solution to the strike.

“We wanted the ANC to initiate a political intervention on the impasse between Salga and the unions to ensure that the deadlock is broken,” Sema said.

Msunduzi municipal spokesperson Brian Zuma said, “Msunduzi management is going to have a meeting today to discuss and put together a contingency plan to be effected during the strike so that residential services are least affected by the strike.”

Zuma promised that once the plans have been made, the public will be informed as to what they should expect during the strike.



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