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By Faizel Patel

Senior Digital Journalist


CCMA to mediate in wage dispute between Numsa and Gautrain

Negotiations between the parties deadlocked, leading to an indefinite strike.


The Council for Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) will be participating as an honest broker in a wage dispute between metal workers union Numsa and the Bombela Operating Company (BOC), which manages and operates the Gautrain.

Negotiations between the parties deadlocked, leading to an indefinite strike earlier this week by Gautrain employees affiliated to Numsa.

The disgruntled workers gathered at Gautrain’s maintenance workshop depot in Midrand, barricading the road leading to the facility with burning tyres.

Demands

The workers are demanding a 9% salary increase across the board; medical aid contributions of 60% by the BOC with employees contributing 40%; and a housing allowance of R2,000 per employee per month. BOC is offering a 5.6% hike.

Numsa spokesperson Phakamile Hlubi-Majola said  the union will be participating in the CCMA process with “an open mind,” in order to ensure that they play their role, in finding a speedy resolution to the strike. 

“We do not think our demands are unreasonable. The lowest paid worker earns R8,000pm without any benefits. The cost of living is extremely high if one factors in the petrol price, and the fact that the average food basket costs over R5,300.

“It is against this backdrop that workers’ rejected the bosses wage offer of 5.6% because this is way below inflation,” Hlubi-Majola said.

ALSO READ: WATCH: Numsa to continue Gautrain strike until wage demands met

Strike

Hlubi-Majola said Numsa also met with the Gautrain management where representatives from the office of the MEC for Transport, Kedibone Diale Tlabela, were present.

 “The atmosphere of the meeting was positive and we hope that a speedy resolution will be found to settle the strike. We have always said the door to engagement remains open. However, as long as a meaningful offer has not been placed on the table by the employer, the strike will continue indefinitely.”

Hlubi-Majola has called on all parties to work with the union so that an amicable resolution to the strike can be found.

ALSO READ: Gautrain joins strike: A blow for the province

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