An arbitrator will finally resolve the dispute between suspended armed guard Sheriff Ramaremisa and Bidvest Protea Coin. This after efforts by the National Bargaining Council for the Private Security Sector (NBCPSS) to mediate on the matter failed.
Sinomhlobo Katangana of Salt Employee Benefits told City Press on Monday that their efforts had been unsuccessful, following the conclusion of their initial investigation into Ramaremisa’s complaint about the R500 deduction from his salary.
Katangana said the NBCPSS would now proceed with the enforcement processes as per Section 33(a) of the Labour Relations Act.
“The designated agent issues a compliance order for non-compliance, which requests the employer to comply with the violated provisions of the main agreement within 14 days. If the employer does not comply, we then set the matter down for arbitration, whereby both parties will be brought to make their submissions before the commissioner [arbitrator]. Once that process is done, the commissioner will make a ruling/award which is equivalent to the order of court. If the employer does not comply with the award, it may be certified and a writ of execution may be obtained to get the sheriff to enforce it,” Katangana said.
Mediation fails if an employer and an employee cannot reach an agreement. Katangana said:
In the meantime, Ramaremisa has lodged another dispute about his suspension with the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration.
What legislation says
According to the Labour Relations Act, an arbitrator may make an appropriate award, which is binding and final.
The award may:
- order any person to pay any amount owing in terms of a collective agreement;
- impose a fine for a failure to comply with a collective agreement; and
- order a party to pay the costs of the arbitration.
“If an employer, upon whom a fine has been imposed in terms of this section, files an application to review and set aside an award made in terms of subsection (8), any obligation to pay a fine is suspended, pending the outcome of the application... The minister may, after consulting the National Economic Development and Labour Council, publish in the Government Gazette a notice that sets out the maximum fines that may be imposed by an arbitrator in terms of this section,” the act reads.
It further states the notice may specify the maximum fine that may be imposed for a breach of a collective agreement, involving a failure to pay any amount of money, and for repeated breaches of the collective agreement.