Workers down tools

2019-10-31 06:01
Workers from the Khayelitsha Special School downed tools on Monday 28 October demanding payment. PHOTO: UNATHI OBOSE

Workers from the Khayelitsha Special School downed tools on Monday 28 October demanding payment. PHOTO: UNATHI OBOSE

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Learning and teaching were severely interrupted at the Khayelitsha Special School, in Khayelitsha, on Monday 28 October, when bus drivers embarked on a strike over salaries.

Scores of learners, who rely on the buses to be transported to and from the school, were left stranded after the drivers failed to pick them up.

When City Vision spoke to one of the drivers he indicated that they were in a meeting with the school principal in a quest to resolve the impasse.

The drivers were allegedly meant to receive their salaries by the end of last week, however, the Western Cape department of education (WCED) has denied the non-payment claims, saying the workers are paid on the last day of the month.

Bronagh Hammond, spokesperson for the department, said the strike was caused by a “misunderstanding” from the drivers. “There seems to have been a misunderstanding about the date payment and drivers complained that they didn’t have sufficient money to transport themselves to the school where they pick up the buses and then proceed to collect the learners,” said Hammond.

She stated that the payment of their salaries is due at the end of the month as always scheduled.

She said the school has intervened to provide transport for the drivers until they are paid on Thursday 31 October.

In an interview with City Vision, one of the drivers said they have been promised their full payment today. He said they have been asked by the school not to talk about the matter until then.

Khayelitsha Education Forum chairperson Nomawethu Mosana promised to investigate the matter. She said the forum had no prior knowledge of the strike at the school and vowed to get in touch with the forum’s representative at the school.

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