Ugu workers down tools - again

2017-11-09 06:00
PHOTO: suppliedMany have been without water for over a week because of a strike by Ugu District Municipality: Water Services employees.

PHOTO: suppliedMany have been without water for over a week because of a strike by Ugu District Municipality: Water Services employees.

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SERVICE delivery came to a standstill at the Ugu District Municipality when employees downed tools in protest over staff issues. This after the mayor reportedly failed to meet with their union - South African Workers Union - to resolve the unhappiness over the organogram and the group scheme payout.

Residents in Ramsgate, Uvongo, San Lameer, Margate, Nositha, Shelly Beach, Izingolweni, KwaNzimakwe, Marburg, Merlewood, Gamalakhe, Murchison, Louisiana and other areas have been without water for the past week due to the strike.

Samwu members marched in August and handed over a memorandum to the municipal mayor, Mondli Chiliza.

Samwu chair Mthandeni Ngcobo said at a media briefing at Samwu offices on Monday that municipal employees met last Thursday and resolved that they wanted to meet with the mayor.

“We have been waiting to meet with the mayor from June, but he has not responded to our grievances,” said Ngcobo.

Ngcobo said workers were angered­ by the fact that instead of addressing them management allegedly hired a private security company and threatened to hire contractors.

The union also claims the municipality threatened to suspend 150 employees.

“We used to have local labour forum­ meetings, now we don’t and we don’t have a platform to discuss labour issues with an employer,” said Ngcobo.

Municipality spokesman France Zama confirmed that the water supply was affected as a result of the striking workers. “This unlawful action by the workers has been marred by a series of unauthorised interference and tampering of our water infrastructure rendering it unable to provide water to most communities,”said Zama.

He says the municipality has taken stern action to ensure the perpetrators of these acts of sabotage face the full might of the law.

“Numerous cases have been opened in this regard with the South African Police Service and investigations are ongoing,” he said.

Zama said a court interdict against the striking workers has also been obtained and measures to implement its provisions are under way.

Processes to deal with the employees who took part in the illegal action are also under way.



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