Unions hopeful strikes will end

2012-10-06 17:37

Johannesburg - The unions involved in the truck drivers' strike said action continued on Saturday but they were hopeful an agreement would be reached during negotiations next week.

"We are positive that we might find a solution because there is a lot at stake," the Motor Transport Workers' Union's (MTWU) Dirk White said.

"This strike is not about political play - people can lose their jobs."

The Road Freight Employers' Association (RFEA) spokesperson Magretia Brown-Engelbrecht said after negotiations deadlocked on Thursday night, talks were expected to continue on Tuesday.

Notice of negotiations

The strike began two weeks ago, after employers and unions failed to reach an agreement on wages.
Unions reverted to a 12% pay demand after rejecting a lower offer tabled by employers.

The unions involved are South African Transport & Allied Workers' Union (Satawu), the Professional Transport and Allied Workers' Union SA (PTAWU), the Transport and Allied Workers' Union of SA and MTWU.

Satawu spokesperson Vincent Masoga said the strike was continuing and they had received a notice of negotiations.

"We will always be hopeful," he said.

"More importantly, we are hopeful that the employers will play ball this time around."

PTAWU's Pancho Ndevu agreed with the other unions and said they will remain hopeful for the workers.

On Wednesday, the RFEA tabled an agreement with the unions, labour department and the CCMA which all parties indicated they were willing to sign.

"On Thursday, Satawu reneged on said agreement, despite the fact that the agreement addressed their need of a double-digit figure in the first year," Brown-Engelbrecht said.

"In our opinion, Satawu’s conduct is a breach of trust and threatens the institution of collective bargaining."

Court rules against strike

The agreement stated an increase of 10% in the first year, 8% on the second year, and 9% in a third additional year.

White said in order for an agreement to be reached, a 51% majority was needed to sign.

On Friday, the Labour Court in Johannesburg made a ruling which would make it tougher for unions to continue with the ongoing truck drivers' strike, Brown-Engelbrecht said.

"The RFEA recognises the right to strike - as long as such action takes place in an orderly fashion."

The court order stated that all unions involved should take "all reasonable steps" to communicate to members to "unequivocally condemn the use of any type of violence, intimidation or damage to property".

  • nicholas.graan - 2012-10-06 17:50

    "There is a lot at stake" "People can lose their jobs" The Rand has hit a 3 year low but all parties decide to take the weekend off and resume negotiations on Tuesday. Should they not be locked behind closed doors all weekend until a solution is found or is it not important enough for that?

      altusvanzyl - 2012-10-06 18:07

      Nee dude hulle syp nou en maak nog kinders.

  • JamesMWood - 2012-10-06 17:55

    We hope the employers will play ball, wow always the employer must succumb to these rediculois demands and the workers don't have to do anything in return, they aren't even held responsible for damage they cause during strikes

      robert.dood.1 - 2012-10-06 18:09

      The new South Africa...rainbow nation

      heathway.master - 2012-10-06 19:08

      When I first started working, the first thing my parents told me was not to wipe my behind with my job. They told me it was one of the most precious things a person could have. These strikers have wiped their behinds with their jobs, and the mine should stand firm on never ever hiring them again. Let them learn than everyone is responsible for their own actions, and they must sleep in the bed they have made for themselves. As for threatening violence, they are continuously violent so what is at all different. Let mine security shoot them between the eyes as they carry out their job of protecting mine property. The whole of South Africa is now sick to death of the behaviour of these completely ungrateful and undeserving scum.

  • Charles Frederik Robberts - 2012-10-06 18:23

    No work,No pay! Carry on with the strike and feel the benefits on pay day!

  • eugene.mulder1 - 2012-10-06 18:26

    Claim all damages against the unions!

      silence.mnisi.7 - 2012-10-06 18:50

      yes satawu must pay

      aroka.murombe - 2012-10-06 19:07


  • silence.mnisi.7 - 2012-10-06 18:49

    the empoyers must play a ball. dd the workers pass back that ball. im working 4 transport comp. dis guys u hv to push them to do wht they supose to do. they must continue striking n we continue working n earning wht we deserve. ndlala a yi tlangi.

      patricia.dewet.92 - 2012-10-07 17:05

      Do the drivers buy the trucks, do they pay for the diesel, do they pay for services and breakdowns. No the don't, they drive and if they don't like it look for another job, or better still buy your own truck and create you own income. The harder you work the more money you make. We can stand together, enough retired people that will do it, and I think better. Anybody can be replaced.

  • aroka.murombe - 2012-10-06 18:56

    My opinion..... Truck driver's strikes we don't have fuel ATMS are empty yet we say they don't deserve what they are worth. Exactly what are this guys worth if we suffer so much when they stop working and makes what you call ridiculous demands.......?

      max.reynecke - 2012-10-06 19:22

      Hey wena, what is your IQ with these kind of arguements? Are you retarded?

      christi.roestorff - 2012-10-06 19:51

      There are a few who won't feel the effects of the knock on price increases as a result of upping these employees wages, are you in that position?

      patricia.dewet.92 - 2012-10-07 17:09

      Easy, go to the bank, it might teach you of money matters. I think you are to stupid to know that to give them more money no problem but the consumer will just have to pay more.

  • aroka.murombe - 2012-10-06 19:12

    I'm not trying to be racial, funny or what so ever but what ever comment that is made by a white person in hear is negative reason why? Cause the strike does not affect them we are the once who are driving those trucks... And sorry if you fill offended....

      pierre.nortje.581 - 2012-10-06 19:17

      They are killing black drivers who try to save our economy - what response did you thought you will get from civilized people?

      max.reynecke - 2012-10-06 19:19

      You do not only sound stupid, you are stupid by thinking whites don't drive trucks. The difference between the two groups of drivers are that the one group is civilized and the other one can decide which one is which.

      ria.visser.378 - 2012-10-06 20:41

      Sorry for you Aroka, I happen 2 be a so call white person and my husband is ALSO a truck driver and a member of the union satarwu. White people are also truck drivers. This strike is hurting everybody! Do you think we have'nt got responsibilities @ the end of the month. Our rent must be paid and is not as little (if any) as yours. We've got a lot of African friends and they never ever refer to us as white people, they refer to us as brother and sister, and visa versa. We are all people made by God, colour was not an issue ever by our God.

      chris.potgieter.73 - 2012-10-07 09:45

      Now when you have the extra money will you save it? In the meantime your demands have killed not only people but businesses! Will the collective now support the families of the dead?

  • pierre.nortje.581 - 2012-10-06 19:15

    Maybe they can burn a few more trucks and kill a few more drivers before making a decision. I mean, time are on these killers side - Hoot-Hoot !!

  • tiaan.truter - 2012-10-06 19:57

    "This strike is not about political play - people can lose their jobs." Yes and then they lose their jobs and then they just go on strike because of that...They are to stupid too realize that striking wont always make it better.But i guess thats the animal way of doing things.

  • Conrad Janse van Rensburg - 2012-10-06 19:57

    Call marikana riot police, get better shots this time

  • karoo.candy - 2012-10-06 19:58

    Unions always blame violent attacks on a "Thugs" or "criminal elements" stating that their members are peaceful and so absolve themselves and their members of any responsibility and then liability for deliberate injury and wilful destruction caused, yet they are the only ones who benefit from it.

  • patricia.dewet.92 - 2012-10-06 20:55

    The unions don't want it to stop because it makes them look important. the union coins the money but the stupid workers suffer, Go to the union and ask for money, they are getting rich could't care less or the workers.

  • sunnygerida - 2012-10-06 22:21

    Bring back the trains!!! The roads will stay in a better condition, not so much accidents, no more burning trucks and no more strikes from these drivers!

  • willem.pelser.9 - 2012-10-07 03:07

    Simple logic if the truck drivers wages go up the cost to transport our goods like food etc go up this will mean the cost of our food etc WILL go up

      christi.roestorff - 2012-10-07 08:01

      Hence my previous comment. The funny thing is that majority of those supporting the strikers will be the first to bitch about the resultant price increases!

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