Union leader in Sobantu strike visit

2014-02-12 00:00

THE general secretary of the Food and Allied Workers’ Union (Fawu), Katishi Masemola, visited workers at Unilever in Sobantu yesterday to intervene following a four-week strike.

KZN Fawu organiser Joe Brown said the negotiations took hours, but management agreed that their members would go back to their original grades, which was not the case before the dispute started.

“We agreed that there will be job evaluation on the disputed grades, and pending the outcome of the evaluation people will go back to their original grades,” he said.

Brown said the strike action revolves around the nine percent wage increment that members want and the reversal of a youth wage subsidy-type model where grades were lowered in terms of remuneration rates to employ young workers at lower rates while the content of the grades or jobs remains the same.

“We told the management that our members would settle for eight percent if production is to resume, but management refused to move, sticking with seven percent,” he said.

Brown said that while some progress was made, they would continue the strike until the company gives them at least eight percent.

• thobani.ngqulunga@witness.co.za

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