Metrorail: Satawu strike 'dismal failure'

2012-02-27 13:57

Johannesburg - The organised rail workers' strike by the SA Transport and Allied Workers' Union (Satawu) was a failure, Metrorail said on Monday.
"Overall, Metrorail was able to run an 85% train service in all its regions, which indicates that the strike was a dismal failure," spokesperon Lawrence Venkile said.
A group within Satawu had promised a total shutdown of train services across the country, he said in a statement.
However, Satawu national spokesperson Mamokgethi Molopyane denied this.
"We will not get into a public dispute as to who is right about the turnout. The stations in Gauteng were heavily affected."
Metrorail said operations on Monday morning were only marginally affected by the strike, but that there had been reports of intimidation of drivers arriving for duty, particularly at the Scheiding Street depot in Pretoria.
"We have dispatched our protection services to monitor the situation in this area," said Venkile.
Striking rail workers were calling for the suspension of Passenger Rail Agency of SA (Prasa) Group CEO Lucky Montana over alleged tender irregularities.
"The Prasa board must commission a forensic investigation into the allegations raised against Mr Montana, and pending that outcome he must be placed on special leave or suspension," Molopyane said.
"Our members will regroup on Wednesday to assess the impact of the strike. They are planning a mass march to the department of transport in Pretoria on March 5 to highlight the serious issues within Prasa," she said.
Prasa CEO Mosenngwa Mofi said: "It is rather unfortunate that this strike is premised on unsubstantiated allegations, which have been rejected as unfounded, spurious and without any basis.
"We are pleased that our employees have remained vigilant and not allowed themselves to be used in a campaign to discredit the business."
Metrorail appealed for commuters' patience during the strike and said it would keep them informed of the developments throughout Monday.