Sakhiseni Nxumalo
Senior journalist
2 minute read
10 Nov 2021
06:34

KwaZulu-Natal Gambling and Betting Board staff to continue strike

Sakhiseni Nxumalo

KwaZulu-Natal Gambling and Betting Board staff say they will continue with their protest action after a meeting held on Monday failed to resolve the dispute.

KwaZulu-Natal Gambling and Betting Board staff say they will continue with their protest action after a meeting held on Monday failed to resolve the dispute.

The staff are demanding that management meet their demands of salary increments and bonuses, among other issues, as the strike, which started last Thursday, continues.

The workers, led by the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa, claimed that the gambling board executives had refused to give them bonuses for more than three years.

One of the workers told The Witness it was sad that they haven’t received a salary increase since 2019, while the board collects hundreds of million of rand per year.

“… initially we had demanded a 5,1% of salary increments. We spent the whole day in that meeting and no conclusion could be reached … we told the employer that we can’t go below 4,5%. We did that because we understand that you can’t always get what you want.”
KwaZulu-Natal Gambling and Betting Board staff member

Workers accused board executives of treating them like slaves, and claimed that they are able to reward themselves through bonuses and salary increment, yet cite unavailability of funds when it comes to workers.

On Tuesday, staff decided to suspend their protest action for a day to allow management and union representatives to engage and find a solution. However, after another failed engagement, the protest action is expected to continue on Wednesday.

According to the workers, this after the board did not come back with any response to the protesting staff regarding the new offer.

WATCH | Protesting KZN gambling board workers demand bonuses

One of the staff members said that negotiations between them and management deadlocked in the meeting on Monday.

“We couldn’t find each other because initially we had demanded a 5,1% of salary increments. We spent the whole day in that meeting and no conclusion could be reached … we told the employer that we can’t go below 4,5%. We did that because we understand that you can’t always get what you want,” he said.

According to the worker, they are currently under the no work, no pay umbrella.

“… The board has told us that they will be consulting with the chief financial officer and come back to us with a new offer.”
KwaZulu-Natal Gambling and Betting Board staff member

He said they are also negotiating with the employer to pay the workers because the strike is protected.

“… The board has told us that they will be consulting with the chief financial officer and come back to us with a new offer,” said a worker.

The board confirmed that the strike was still in progress and said it had developed a response to the matters raised in the memorandum and is willing to deliberate in areas of concern which have been raised.