‘Five years of being underpaid’ – Tshwane revenue collection employees protest

“It has been seven years and we are working like donkeys uplifting the metro’s finances; yet, we are not given the salary we are supposed to get.”

Revenue collection employees, who protested outside the Tshwane House in the Pretoria CBD on Thursday morning, are saying that the metro has been underpaying them for the past five years.

Some of them have been at the forefront of the metro’s aggressive revenue collection campaign that has recouped millions of rands.

Now, they are saying that they are suffering while “enriching” the municipality.

A Tshwane document from 2015 stipulates that the metro would employ 1 000 administrative officers (revenue collection employees) under the credit control department to improve its financial state. The staff were said to receive a stipend of R4 500 during training from 2015 until their permanent appointment.

It was stipulated in the document that when revenue collection agents are permanent, they would receive a monthly salary of R26 859.

However, the employees say this was not the case when they were permanently employed in 2018. They claimed that in 2018 they were paid about R11 000 [the Rekord saw an employee’s payslip confirming this].

This was increased to R20 000, but it still falls R6 000 short.

One of the unhappy workers, Tsholofelo Moadi, said they wanted the metro to pay them according to the document; however, in the past years, they have faced resistance from the municipality.

“It has been seven years and we are working like donkeys uplifting the metro’s finances; yet, we are not given the salary we are supposed to get.”

Moadi said this had severe financial implications for some of them.

“We are parents and we are also from poor backgrounds where different generations of your family are dependent on you. With the small salary we are getting, we are not coping,” he said.

“They are delaying our children’s futures. The management can take their children to better schools, but we cannot because they are holding onto our money.”

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Moadi said the 1 000 employees under credit control were all paid the same salary even though they were not doing the same job.

“We do not have a job description. Anytime any of the managers are angry, they can tell us to do whatever work they want. We are used like donkeys,” he said.

“We are not comfortable with that system. We are doing different duties – from consultants to general workers, but we receive the same salary. This is the danger of not having a job description on the employment contract.”

Another employee, Kido Jiane, said the municipality was breaking the law by not giving them job descriptions.

“The metro is in contravention of the labour laws because we are not even placed under the permanent employee structure same as others despite being permanent.

“We want individual placement letters because the metro treats all one thousand of us as a collective despite having different jobs.

“We want to be treated fairly and equally,” Jiane said.

Metro spokesperson Selby Bokaba said the employees’ problems were being addressed by the municipality through their unions, Imatu and Samwu.

“The employees were informed that as soon as the unions and metro have deliberated on the matter, feedback will be provided to the employees,” Bokaba said.

Photo for illustration. Photo: CoT

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