Bus drivers waste no time in resuming services as strike ends

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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)

Johannesburg – Bus companies have announced that services will resume immediately after drivers ended a three-week long strike over wages.

National bus operators Greyhound and Citiliner said in a statement on Monday that their buses would be fully operational as from this evening.

"All our services on Greyhound and Citiliner coaches will resume from May 14 2018 and the coaches will be operational from May 16,” said Jasen Smallbone, operations executive for Unitrans Passengers.

Unions representing striking drivers have announced that they have agreed to a 9% wage hike for the first year and 8% for the second year. South African Transport and Allied Workers Union spokesperson Zanele Sabela confirmed to Fin24 that basic pay will be backdated to April 1, the date of the beginning of the strike.

MyCiTi  buses and Rea Vaya in Johannesburg will be running as from Tuesday morning.

The company said it expects most buses to comply with normal time schedules on most routes in the latter part of the day.

The nationwide strike by more than 17 000 drivers ground transport services to a halt, causing long lines at taxi ranks and train stations. 

Announcing the end of the strike, secretary general of the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa Irvin Jim confirmed that bus drivers will be returning to their posts as from Tuesday.

“Today we are announcing that this strike is over, and workers will resume work tomorrow, but they have until Wednesday to return to work,” said Jim.

Still some unresolved issues

He said issues like overtime pay and compensation for dual drivers on long distance trips have not been finalised and have been referred to a task team for further negotiations.

“We have secured a mandate from our workers to bring an end to the strike; however, those sticky issues still remain,” said Jim.

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