Nehawu to press on with strike after SARS talks fail

Members of the National Education, Health and Allied Workers Union will be pressing ahead with a strike at the South African Revenue Service on Thursday, the union has said in a statement.

This followed a meeting with SARS, where talks between Nehawu and the tax body failed to break a deadlock, and the tax agency will now have to brace for strike action from a 4 036-strong union.

Nehawu’s demands include a salary increase of 11.4%, as well as recognition of improved qualifications in the form of a 1% increase and a 10% bonus.

The Nehawu statement said the meeting was convened to find a solution other than industrial action which would mollify Nehawu staff and be feasible for SARS.

"The national union declared a dispute after it was clear that the employer was hell-bent on giving workers a salary increase below CPI or a real salary increase," the statement said.

The statement said Tuesday’s meeting between the union and SARS received reports from the negotiating team on the process from the National Bargaining Forum of SARS to the point where the matter was referred to the Commission for Conciliation Mediation and Arbitration.

"After extensive deliberations the meeting took a decision to forge ahead with the strike as planned. As Nehawu, we are happy with the level of readiness for the strike and we are confident that come March 28, 2019 all our members will be at the picket lines as a last resort to force the employer to accede to our demands," the statement said.

The statement concluded by maintaining that SARS was capable of meeting the union’s demands and that the demands were reasonable.

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