Numsa threatens to go on strike if Tshwane does not accede to transport allowance demands

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Numsa marched to the City of Tshwane's office on Friday
Numsa marched to the City of Tshwane's office on Friday
Deaan Vivier

The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) has warned the City of Tshwane that its members will embark on a secondary strike if its transport allowance demands are not met.

Numsa's warning came after its march to the City of Tshwane's offices on Friday, where it demanded the City intervenes in ensuring workers at Tshwane Rapid Transit, Tshwane Affected Investment Operation, and Xtremetec Management are given a transport allowance.

In a statement on Saturday, the union said they work from 04:00 and knock off after 21:00. But the agencies, which run the City of Tshwane's Areyeng BRT system, don't want to provide workers with an allowance or adequate transport, said Numsa.

"There is no safe reliable transport at that time and our members risk their lives trying to get to and from work. At the same time, they spend a fortune of their meagre wages on alternative transportation," said Jerry Morulane, Numsa's Hlanganani Regional Secretary, in a statement on Saturday.

Morulane said Tshwane Rapid Transit has been providing workers with a R1 100 transport allowance since 2014, which has not increased. Xtremetec's workers, who are currently on strike for a transport allowance increase, only receive R600. 

The union is now demanding a R2 500 transport allowance for its members and an allowance of R60 per hour for night shift.

Numsa handed its demands to the City's MMC for Roads and Transport, Dikeledi Selowa. 

The union said Selowa promised to organise a meeting with the agencies' management team to see if the City had funding available to assist workers with a transport allowance. They will respond in writing by next Wednesday. 

"We will be waiting with keen interest for a response from the City to our demands. If they fail to respond adequately to our demands, our members from TRT (Tshwane Rapid Transit) and TAIO (Tshwane Affected Investment Operation) have instructed us to serve the City with a 48-hour notice for a secondary strike to join workers at Xtremetec," Morulane said.

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