October 4, 2007

Samwu threat of national strike

The South African Municipal Workers Union (Samwu) is threatening to call a countrywide strike if a Labour Court ruling does not go its way. The union, which embarked on a two-day strike earlier, wants the court to grant it an order that allows it to continue with the industrial action. The union was initially given two days to strike. If the union were to embark on a countrywide strike, there would be severe disruption of municipal services, and this just a few months after schooling and some health-care services were brought to a standstill due to a strike by public servants.
"If the Labour Court ... does not give the desired result, we will apply for a national strike to pursue our demands," said the union’s Johannesburg secretary, Dumisani Langa. The union's Johannesburg members demand free transport to and from work on municipal buses, salary parity for employees with the same experience and qualifications, and an end to job casualisation. Samwu and city bosses appeared in the Labour Court yesterday to make their cases. (Business Day, Johannesburg)

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