Transport strike deal ‘a long way off’

2010-09-03 10:10

Johannesburg - Negotiators worked until the early hours on Friday in an attempt to end a strike in the motor industry, but did not reach a settlement, the National Union of Metalworkers of SA (Numsa) said.

"We still have a long way to go," said deputy general secretary Karl Cloete.

"We are nowhere near a negotiated settlement and the strike would continue indefinitely with protest marches in Durban and Rosslyn, Pretoria, where we are going to be handing over memorandums just to show our determination to continue the strike," he said.

Numsa did, however, plan to return to the negotiating table at 13:00 on Monday under a Commission for Conciliation Mediation and Arbitration process to try and find a resolution.

Most of Thursday night and Friday morning's negotiations focused on the finer points of an agreement, such as the date until when a settlement would be backdated.

Traditionally, the motor industry did not backdate pay agreements regardless of how long it took to settle, said Cloete.

Numsa wanted an agreement that a settlement would be backdated to September 1, the first day of the strike.

It has demanded that petrol pump attendants earn R20 an hour instead of the current R13 an hour, a 15% increase on actual earnings across the board, and the outlawing of labour brokers.

Employers have offered 6.6%.

The Volkswagen plant in Uitenhage has closed because of the knock-on effect of a Numsa strike in the components sector.

Workers at the plant are not on strike, but have been sent home with no pay while the factory stands idle.

Cloete said BMW had also closed a factory, but this could not be immediately confirmed.

Numsa and Retail Motor Industry (RMI) representatives would have
a "high-level" meeting over the weekend as part of ongoing talks.

The auto industry is currently recovering from an eight-day strike which had a severe impact on production levels.

RMI was not immediately available for comment.

  • mikeh - 2010-09-03 10:37

    R20 per hour is quite a ;ot for a job that is totally unnecessary anyway. All over Europe and USA,motorists fill their own cars up.

  • wins - 2010-09-03 10:40

    Volkswagen and BMW. Suites them tight. Close down, without jobs they've got nothing to strike about. The union bosses could always start a "donkey cart" factory for their members.

  • Simon Jester - 2010-09-03 10:59

    And when our overseas customers begin cancelling orders for SA made vehicle - plants will close and people will permanently lose their jobs. The work will go to China once again.... Are we so stupiod as to ignore reality in the manufacturing sector.

  • Tom - 2010-09-03 11:06

    Yeah, those petrol pump attendants had better watch themselves, because if they start demanding too much, their job will simply disappear. At some point it gets more economical to let drivers fill up themselves.

  • susan - 2010-09-03 11:23

    Why doesnt they use machines at filling stations like atms where you can buy a certain amount of fuel and the machine disposes that amount of fuel automaticly?

  • Vish - 2010-09-03 11:28

    it is absolutly adsurd that I cannot fill my own feul, if this does happen, surely the price of feul comes down small avg, me for would not mind donig this, some attendants dont even check water oil or pressure if not asked to do so. Wate of money in feul taxes

  • Cookie - 2010-09-03 11:29

    Excessive increases & demands will inflate prices. Who suffers in the end - the motorist

  • GNPLK - 2010-09-03 11:30

    What strike? I work in the industry and we have about 60 staff mambers, everybody is at work. We all would like an increase, as would just about every person out there, but nobody can afford to go how ever long without receiving a salary. Typical catch 22 situation.

  • Danie - 2010-09-03 11:33

    Come on Ford, Nissan, Toyota and GM. Close your plants and let these killers of our country and economy feel it on their pockets. Someone has to stop this madness. Import your cars and goods. Much cheeper.

  • Geyser - 2010-09-03 11:33

    Cut the pay of management and use those savings to increase workers wages and salaries. Workers are the ones who actually make factories run and bring profits for the companies. If they decide to use automation then let the robots consume the goods they produce. And if they move their production to China, then stop importing Chinese goods, but this blakmail about moving production to other countries must not be accepted. Put an end this exploitation of the moneyless people and this eternal slavery.

  • Bravespice - 2010-09-03 11:35

    Petrol Attendants task is menial in that it only requires a person to have as a minimum adult basic education. If they want to earn more then I suggest that they embark on a career that will pay them more. This job provides opportunity for the people with minimum education. Petrol Attendants do not pay taxes as they are below the tax threshold. Their demands for higher pay reduces the cash flowing into the Government coffers. In other words the money that you would have been paying for taxes is now diverted to non tax paying citizens. So in the bigger picture the country loses and that is a disaster . This is Africa

  • James - 2010-09-03 11:36

    Yes, been there, done that (filled up on fuel myself) cleaned my own windscreen, checked the oil and coolant and then did not feel compelled to tip myself. The petrol staions attendants would be very well advised that they could lose their jobs and the staions would then be able to operate on a much lower margin, to the benefit of the average motorist

  • Robert - 2010-09-03 11:37

    Let these petrol attendants retire and operate like overseas. Sick and tired of these strikers who are bad workers anyhow. Don't deserve their jobs let alone an increase. All they are good at is violence.

  • Ryan - 2010-09-03 11:39

    R20 per hour is plenty, add this to the tips they get from almost every person who fills up and you probably end up getting around R30 a hour if they get this increase. Thats more than a lot of skilled labour workers out there.

  • PEgirl - 2010-09-03 11:43

    Yes we all want more mony...will anyoone ever be content with what they have? What about the beggar on the street, or the man sitting at home unemployed for months? Surely tehse guys should be gratefulthat they have SOME income coming in. We all are guilty of wanting to live the life of the rich and famous but we are not all destined to live this life. I dont earn much, however I faithfully come in to work everyday do what I have to and go home. Ones sense of value will always be higher than reality. If these people want to be it. But dont make your issues otehr peoples issues. Last night at company the swat team had to be called in to assist temp workers at a company in PE. Not only where these workers terrified but so were the company that employed them. There is no point and definately no need to resort to violence. What does it help? NOTHING!

  • NEVER SATISFIED - 2010-09-03 11:49

    We should be asking ourselves are we ever satisfied with the amount of money we get? we are never satisfied by the time we get an increase we already preparing for the next strike...

  • zanel - 2010-09-03 12:00

    most of these strikers will be joing the millions of SA unemployed no job no year when their factories close ..then who will they blame?

  • ifundi - 2010-09-03 12:15

    Automate their jobs , then you dont need them, let them strike for the rest of their lives. The saying half a loaf is better than none applies here. Thats why the Chinese prosper, they work.

  • SA Citizen - 2010-09-03 12:23

    Not everyone tips petrol attendants and im sure 99% of you that have commented dont do that. You live good lives and thats why you have no empathy......shame on you

  • No name - 2010-09-03 12:25

    shame on you all

  • Shrek - 2010-09-03 12:36

    Agree with Danie. BMW & VW closed, textile factory in KZN closed permanently, Da Gama textiles in Eastern Cape retrenches about 800 employees, Ford relocating part of its production to Europe........Disinvestment has started.

  • @mikeh - 2010-09-03 15:36

    this is south Africa, not Europe or USA. one other thing, i do not remember anyone giving tips to petrol attendats. because you are not earning 20 per hour, that is the reason why you guys think it is a lot.

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