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Numsa: 30% wage increase for transport workers

Jan 27 2017 19:31
Lameez Omarjee

Johannesburg – A 30% wage increase for bus passenger transport workers is only one of the demands that have been presented to employers in the sector, according to a statement by the National Union of Metalworkers South Africa (Numsa).

Numsa is leading the negotiations with employers, which started off this week. The union hopes to reach an agreement before the end of March before the new contracts commence in April, explained acting spokesperson Phakamile Hlubi.

Numsa highlighted that workers were feeling the brunt of food and petrol inflation. “The tragic irony is that despite the fact that they work in the public transport sector, 40% of their salary is spent on public transportation,” the union stated.

Besides a 30% wage increase across the board, the workers are demanding a basic salary of R15 000 per month. A R1500 housing allowance for eligible employees, along with a R1200 sleeping allowance is also up for discussion. 

As for overtime, workers want to be paid 1.5 times the normal rate and double of “forced” to work on their day off. The maximum permitted overtime should also not exceed 10 hours per week.

Numsa also wants the industry to establish an Industry Policy Forum with the aim to transform the South African Road Passenger Bargaining Council (SARPBC) by reviewing its agreements. The new agreements should be in the “interest of employees” stated the union.  

READ: Zuma, ANC hindering progress, says Numsa

The union wants government to also step in and work with employers to reach an agreement in negotiations and threatened to “embark on a program of mass action” to ensure demands are met.

Hlubi told Fin24 that a strike will be the last resort once all other options are exhausted. 

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