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Teachers union refuses wage offer

Oct 10 2010 15:56 Sapa

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Johannesburg - The SA Democratic Teachers' Union (Sadtu) has confirmed it is rejecting the government's wage offer, a union official said on Sunday.

However, the union would not embark on industrial strike action and had formally ended the current strikes, Sadtu spokesperson Nomusa Cembi said.

"The union refuses to sign the document," she said.

"Sadtu will continue to give full report backs on the process to its members on the way forward."

The government had offered a 7.5% wage increase and R800 housing allowance and had included proposals on medical scheme payments and the minimum service level agreement.

This followed a three week public sector strike.

The Sunday Times newspaper reported that re-elected Sadtu president Thobile Ntola said: "we still feel strongly that what government is putting on the table is immoral".

"Quality public service cannot be delivered by computers, but by workers, human beings, and for them to be passionate and focused to deliver quality service, they must be paid very well," he told delegates at the end of the union's national congress in Johannesburg.

"What we are declaring from this congress is war with the government."

The Democratic Alliance on Sunday said Sadtu had turned into a "reckless monster".

This was due to the statement Ntola made on television on Sunday saying the union would make the country "ungovernable", the DA said.

"The escalation of anarchistic rhetoric comes on the heels of yesterday's (Saturday) statement that Sadtu has declared 'war on government'," the party said in a statement.

The DA said it was urging Sadtu members to put the interests of pupils first by terminating their union membership thereby ending the "financial lifeline that keeps this anti-education organisation, which is hostile to the interests of learners, alive".

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