'The bus strike was the last resort' - Satawu

2018-04-23 11:04
Golden Arrow Bus Services have stopped operating during the nationwide strike. (Jenni Evans/News24)

Golden Arrow Bus Services have stopped operating during the nationwide strike. (Jenni Evans/News24)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

As the nationwide bus strike, now in its sixth day, continues, bus workers appear more defiant than ever, with trade unions calling for intensified strike action.

The strike, which started on Wednesday, came as a result of failed wage negotiations between the unions and bus company bosses. It was hoped negotiations would end the impasse last week, however, they ended in a deadlock following a two-day meeting with the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA).

ALSO READ: Commuters face another hard week as nationwide bus strike continues

Workers are demanding a 9.5% salary increase in the first year and 9% in the second year. They initially demanded 12%, with their employers offering 7%.

"We are calling on all non-unionised members to join in the strike because at the end of the day, this agreement will benefit them too," South African Transport Allied Workers Union (Satawu) spokesperson Zanele Sabela said.

No dates for future negotiations have been communicated.

Sabela said that negotiations started in January.

50 bus companies not operating

"We only started striking three months after negotiations started. The bus strike was the last resort," she said.

"Unfortunately, the strike is hurting the commuters, but they understand our struggle because the commuter and the workers are the same people."

A joint statement from Satawu, the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa), Tirisano, the Transport and Allied Workers Union of South Africa and the Transport and Omnibus Workers Union said that the intensified strike action was in response to the employers’ "provocative attitudes" during negotiations.

ALSO READ: Bus strike set to intensify - unions

"They were not very forthcoming during negotiations and it was very frustrating. We have not heard anything about future meetings, but we remain open to it," Sabela said.

At least 50 bus companies across the country are not operating as the strike intensifies.

WATCH: The strike will continue until demands are met - bus drivers vow

Golden Arrow Bus Services spokesperson Bronwen Dyke-Beyer said that the company sympathised with its workers.

"It's difficult to quantify financial loss. We're more concerned about our passengers and our colleagues. The policy is no work, no pay, so we are worried about them," Dyke-Beyer said.

WATCH: This Cape Town taxi driver wants the bus strike to end

Read more on:    golden arrow  |  satawu  |  transport  |  protest action  |  strikes  |  labour

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Inside News24

 
/News
Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.