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Former workers vow to continue their sit-in at Tshwane House

The former general workers began their sit-in on Monday and said they would not be leaving Tshwane House until they get their jobs back.

Some of the disgruntled employees who staged a sit-in at Tshwane House to demand that the city reinstate them to their old positions have spoken to Rekord about their demands.

The former general workers began their sit-in on Monday and they said they would not be leaving Tshwane House until the metro give them their jobs back.

They and the metro clashed on Wednesday when the workers pelted police with stones, according to the metro.

On Wednesday during an interview with Rekord, Pertia Makgamatho said the situation that they find themselves in hurts a lot.

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Former employee shows wound caused by rubber bullet.

“I have been sleeping here for three days now. We live by asking people for donations so that we can have something to eat.”

Makgamatho said the only thing they want is their jobs back.

“We are not sitting here because we want to but because we just want to go back to work. They promised us permanent posts but now they are turning against their word.

“It has been very difficult for me financially because I now have to ask everything from neighbours. I’m even lazy to wake up in the morning because I have nothing to do at home and that is why I decided that I should come here. The only time I will leave here is when everything has been fixed.”

Lerato Maema, who is seven months pregnant, was also among the former employees.

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Maema said she only discovered it last year when her child was applying for NSFAS that she was still employed by the city.

“They told me he cannot qualify because I am permanently employed. I can’t get any grants including the R350. Everything says I’m permanently employed.

“I’m forced to come here to fight for my job because I’m a single parent. It’s been three days since I have been sleeping here in the condition I am in. I’m prepared to stay here even until we get our jobs back. My hospital file is here so that if anything happens, I am able to go to the hospital.”

 

Tshwane metro spokesperson Selby Bokaba said the 627 former contract workers, known as “capacity employees”, were employed on a fixed 12 months contract between October 2019 to October 2020.

“Tension escalated this afternoon (Wednesday) after they pelted police with stones who retaliated with rubber bullets.”

Bokaba said when the employment contract ended last year, the municipality sent them a termination letter on November 5, 2020, inviting them to visit their HR agent to complete a slew of documents, including the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UI-19) form, which formalised their termination.

“However, the former employees refused to heed the call to come forward to complete the forms, insisting instead to be permanently absorbed into the employ of the metro.”

No police comment was received by the time of going to print.

Wound from a rubber bullet. Photo : Supplied

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