Fin24

Public servants vote on strike

2010-07-13 11:13

Johannesburg - The Public Servants Association (PSA) is balloting its 210 000 members on whether they should go on strike over what they consider an unacceptable pay offer, according to a statement released on Tuesday.

"The responses received to date via the various provincial structures clearly indicate that the majority of members who participated in the mandating processes are in favour of strike action and this support base is growing daily", said PSA deputy general manager Manie de Clercq.

Conciliation failed on June 29 when both sides became stuck on a 6.5% increase and a hike in the housing allowance from R500 to R620 per month.

The conciliator issued a certificate on June 29 indicating that the various disputes remain unresolved.

De Clercq said so far 80% of PSA members had opted to strike, and they hoped to finalise the canvassing by Friday. They worked in home affairs, deeds offices, immigration and public hospitals.

Other unions also bargaining in that chamber include the SA Democratic Nurses Union (Denosa), the National Education, Health and Allied Workers' Union, the Police and Prisoners' Civil Rights Union, the SA Onderwysersunie (SA Teachers' Union) - up to 1.3 million employees, according to De Clercq.

Denosa spokesperson Asanda Fongqo confirmed the union was part of the Congress of SA Trade Unions sector within the bargaining chamber and had its sights set on the same salary and related improvements, which included a housing allowance of R1 000 and a boosted medical aid contribution.

He defended asking for an increase over the 4.6% inflation rate, saying it was "definitely not high" compared with the rocketing cost of living.

They had been flexible with their negotiations, dropping from their initial demand of 13%, but the government had not budged. They believed public servants deserved increased salaries so that, for example, nurses could be retained.

Public Service spokesperson Dumisani Nkwamba said Minister Richard Baloyi, was meeting unions on Wednesday in the hope of finding a resolution to the impasse. Further details would be made available after that meeting.

  - Sapa

Comments
  • Phakz - 2010-07-13 11:30

    Well, SWC has come and gone and ..... back to reality.

  • ockert - 2010-07-13 11:36

    Guys, your'e timing sucks - you should have done this before - threatend to do it during the world cup - now you have less bargaining power. Most of you are coming back from a month of PAID Holiday as well. - strike you need a pay knock and the cash loan people are waiting for you - maybe the Strike organisers have shares in cash loan franchises?

  • Jan - 2010-07-13 11:38

    Will anyone notice if they go on strike? That is other than their gatherings, the damage they cause to property or the harassing of public? I am sure nobody will notice a drop in performance

  • crocks - 2010-07-13 11:40

    Hmmm... how about they start actually delivering a service which is equal to the salary and benifits currently earned, then talk about an increase, the level of service delivery has gone down over the past 15 years maybe salaries should follow the same trend

  • ockert - 2010-07-13 11:44

    If cost of living is sky rocketing - Then inflation is being incorrectly calculated ??

  • ED - 2010-07-13 11:44

    They will vote: Strike! They don't have to work and get to be violent, turn rubbish bins over and make the rest of us feel that we cannot do without them. It is a sickness in SA. Anyone who takes part in this uge strikes and hurt our economy (their economy) is a barbarian!

  • Elvis - 2010-07-13 11:47

    the public servants deserves better. The Government should ensure that atleast a better and acceptable salary review should be put in place urgently. This will curb number of strikes that are denting our country's image.I fully agree with the unions, 6,5 is totally unreasonable.

  • VUKA - 2010-07-13 11:49

    No wonder why this people are so corrupt. What can you do with a housing allowance of R620? They have really been taken for here. And they have excuses for stealing!

  • gcr - 2010-07-13 11:49

    It is saddening to read articles like this in that the benefits of the SWC to get SA citizens to work together for a common goal of improving the economy is destroyed by greedy workers. I am a pensioner and got an increase of 6.1% - no negotiations thats what the pension fund could afford. Here we have greedy people wanting 13% -what the hell don't you know that you fuel inflation with these unrealistic demands. Trade Unions are a cancer in our society. Simple principles must apply - no productivity gains no salary increase

  • Chris - 2010-07-13 11:51

    answer simple get rid of afew of the top management who will probally not be missed and cut the staff (workers) by 5% and give them increase but make them work 3% harder

  • ir8m8 - 2010-07-13 11:57

    ok so here's my 2 cents: If the Unions no longer hold the inflation rate as a clear indicator, then what is the clear indicator, everybody in the private sector is oblidged to accept this indicator as gospel and we are incremented accordingly, obviously Mr and Mrs G Public all agree that it no longer works and that a new agreed measure needs to be "created", or maybe the current calculation needs to be made more fairly and equitably... Stats SA, me thinks you need to attend the party!

  • Vish - 2010-07-13 12:03

    This is to happen, with councilors, DG's, government members taking massive amounts out of the tax coffers for remuneration purposes, the man on the street doing the actual work wants that increase, when the coffers cannot manage the high percentage increases. . . then what? borrow? increase taxers? because the governement cannot provide sustainble good paying jobs, its a a sad reality for all concerned

  • Fed-up - 2010-07-13 12:17

    I am so sick of hearing of unions' excessive pay hike demands and how quick they are to resort to striking when they don't get what they want. I work for a private company where there is no union and have to shut up and continue working after getting a 4% increase, i.e. below CPI.

  • Steve - 2010-07-13 12:27

    Damn,we sacrificed our increase this year to keep our company viable. These public servants do "next to nothing" and still demand increases. Fire the lot, I say

  • rudolf - 2010-07-13 12:32

    viva basebenzi viva. phambili nge strike phambili. down with self centred regime down.

  • Dee - 2010-07-13 12:39

    Inflation has only been at around 4.5% for the last couple of months. On average, over the past year, inflation has been at approx 7%. A pay rise of 6.5% therefore equals a loss of real income!

  • NENNA - 2010-07-13 13:45

    i HAVE WORKED FOR ONE COMPANY FOR 10 YEARS AND WOULD BE GREATFULL FOR R620.00 HOUSING ALLOWANCE. GET REAL TIMES ARE TOUGH FOR EVERYONE . UNITE AS A COUNTRY

  • IR8M8 - 2010-07-13 13:58

    AND IN READING ALL THE COMMENTS 50% ARE IN SUPPORT OF THE STRIKE, can we as the public strike too, as we demand more accountability of the tax moneys that we pay, specially seeing that its so easy on the other side of the fence, sit on your backside, do nothing and demand all the money in the world, and this is exactly why we have an overextended public service, because its so comfortable, you can't get fired, nobody cares if you waster money etc etc...

  • Strike - 2010-07-13 14:17

    Salaries in the Public Sector are ridiculous.

  • Xolani - 2010-07-13 14:19

    Do you know what 6.5% of R3000 is? These people have kids to send to school and raise, bills and such like to take care of. They deserve decent increases - performance-linked, of course. A lot of money goes to their know-nothing managment. I don't blame them for being upset. Before you judge me just know that I'm in the prvt sector (investment banking) and probably know better than you.

  • SAPD WIFE - 2010-07-13 14:50

    THERE ARE SOME REALY GOOD PUBLIC SERVANTS IN SA! AND THERE PAY SUCKS! IF ESKOM CAN GET A WAY WITH THERE INCREASES AN HOUSING SO CAN THE REST! THEY DESERVE IT MORE THAN ESKOM! THEY DO SUCH IMPORTANT WORK AND NO ONE NOTICES, MAYBE THATS WHY SOME THINK ITS BETTER TO DO NOTHING BECAUSE THATS WHAT THEY GET PAID FOR! MAYBE THE GOVERMENT SHOULD CUT THERE OWN EXPENCES AND HOUSING EXC...... SO THE PEOPLE THAT ACTUALY DO DESERVE IT CAN GET A DECENT PAY RATE!

  • Mandla - 2010-07-13 15:13

    The reality is that one generally gets paid for the work they do. These guys generally work a productive day of possibly 3-4 hours if you're lucky. Maybe it is time to put some performance related benefits to those who actually put in an effective 7 hour day, as in the private sector. The mere fact that we give these public servants housing allowances is crazy, and generally unheard of in the private sector. Let them get of their posteriors and do some work, then when the results have been proved, pay them their due.

  • david - 2010-07-13 19:52

    The govt sucks, we are working so hard but this goes unnoticed. Look at senoir managers' salaries. It a disgrace. I fully support the strike.Lets face reality, the SWC is gone it is now time for the govt to feel the reality

  • Public Servant - 2010-07-18 20:06

    public servants are paid extremely poorly. im a teacher. my bond is R4000 and i get a lowly R500 housing subsidy plus my medical aid subsidy is R1040 and my medical costs me R3280 in total per month. im on discovery health. GEMS members receive R1900 medical aid subsidy. why cant employees who have private medical aids get da same subsidy as GEMS? we are absolutely battling! living hand to mouth month after month. i cant afford to replace my 9 year old car, or maintain my home. Cant go on holiday, have to mark exam scripts during holidays because department sets exam dates till term ends. we dont get paid for this and we cant relax at all. i have to take out student loans for my kids to go university because i couldnt afford to take out an education policy. my fuel costs are through the roof! i earn R12000. After all deductions and neccesary living expenses, im left wid R1300. I KID YOU NOT. We deserve a good increase and better benefits.

  • SAPS wife - 2010-07-21 16:28

    To all those ungrateful people out there, maybe all the teachers / nurses / policemen should strike and then we can see who is going to teach ur kids / take care of the sick and protect your areas....u r so quick to judge but the above servants deserve a descent salary increase and housing allowance. My husband puts his life at risk for u and ur kids, not all policemen are corrupt and lazy, if that was the case the SWC would not have been a success and foreigners would not have felt safe, i think they have proved themselves enough. Maybe some of you must do some voluntary work and put yourselves in their shoes for 1 day. I know the policemen gets a lousy salary as i see my husbands payslip every month, if they get paid better, increases will not be an issue every year.....

  • ayanda - 2010-07-21 16:54

    I think all in all the trade unions fail us as government employees, coz look at company's like eskom who went on strike during the world cup, they had most of their demands met. I guess its ture the trade unions did sign an agreement with the government not to strike during the world cup.

  • Juan - 2010-07-28 19:28

    You have forgotten about all the government sectors, I am a police officer, we have had to setlle all these years for what saps offered us, we cannot strike, we are there day and night to serve the community! Atleast this year the negotiations is with Government as employer, meaning we all get the same increase and the other public sectors may strike, which will benefit us, I hope the other police officers will leave the rest of the public sector to strike, as we cannot. What can a constable do with a gross salary of R8200 per month? You have to pay a bond, a car, education fees and sustain a family consisting your wife and children and than your salary includes a R500 housing allowance and medical aid, never mind we also pay tax, our net salary is about R6000. Live on this! Let the public sector strike, a 6,5% increase will mean R300 pm more for a Constable.

  • NCAKS - 2010-08-22 00:14

    What is good for the goose is good for the geese. If the fat cats in parliament can give themselves 25,5% increase what is wrong with other public servants receiving the same. Does it mean other public servants are less South African than them?

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