Trucker strike: Union warns of escalation

2012-10-02 22:29

Johannesburg - A week-long strike by truck drivers will be stepped up if their demands are not met, the SA Transport and Allied Workers Union said on Tuesday.

"Our strike would be converted to a mass rolling action if we fail to reach an agreement with the employer," the union's chairperson June Dube said.

He was addressing more than 1 000 strikers gathered at the offices of the transport and freight bargaining council in Braamfontein.

The union's Gauteng secretary Chris Nkosi outlined the benefits and the pay increases demanded by the strikers.

"We demand a R5 000 to R10 000 salary for our members, and an allowance for the truck drivers who were transporting hazardous goods," he said.

Council CEO Tersia Stroh who received the memorandum said the demands would be conveyed to employers.

Cosatu general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi said the strike would continue until the demands by employees from the road freight sector were met.

He told strikers marching in Johannesburg that their week-long action, which has caused disruptions in several sectors, deserved wide support.

"Even if we fail to convince the employer on Wednesday, we will continue with our protest until the employer meets our demands," Vavi said.

Satawu and road freight employers are to resume pay talks on Wednesday.

  • sj.fourie.56 - 2012-10-02 22:45

    Typical african mentality...

  • Jacob Zooma - 2012-10-02 22:53

    We Demand!

      dean.polley.3 - 2012-10-03 06:41

      Once the demanded increases have been paid, it's about time that employers start DEMANDING that workers start delivering competently, productively, professionally .... oh what the hell, wishful thinking in this country!!

  • tobydt - 2012-10-02 23:14

    Dont give in to their demands. We can survive without their 'services'. Its time that we show them that we can also 'escalate' in our resolve.

  • nataliepv - 2012-10-02 23:22

    Fire all of them there is many people that's without jobs and will work for that salary!this Government is weak when will they start doing something about this bunch of animals!

  • douglas.reid.921 - 2012-10-03 04:14

    Unions are responsible for strikes and must pay for all damage done by strikers.

      alf.pop - 2012-10-03 20:34

      When is government going to face the situation and takes a decision to reign these criminals in? Arrest them and stick them into a mine shaft until they have cooled down! With all the strikes going on there are enough mine shafts to choose from!There is even space for the entire cabinet!

  • andre.vanzyl.58 - 2012-10-03 04:58

    Every time we pay more for the same output from workers we become less competitive in the global scenario. The medium term effect is that companies shrink or close down and people lose jobs. Unions are thus creating unemployment. Unions kick the unemployed in order to benefit the employed. Unions drive political motives instead of looking after the workers/poor as they claim. Unions will eventually destroy this country.

      magatikele.magatikele - 2012-10-03 15:00

      U ar correct in saying the unions willeventually destroy this country. They have already managed to destroy this country. I want u to know that south africans need to stand and defend their future. Time is running out as we are busy copmplaining and not helpping to change the situation. One day we will make sure that the people change this current government FROM BEN

  • Gerald Jordaan - 2012-10-03 05:04

    And don't forget to burn everything in sight so that S&P Moodys et al can downgrade SA's credit rating to Banana Republic!!

  • Ze Don - 2012-10-03 06:16

    Unions are now responsible for damage caused during strikes, right?. So let's take this one step further, if I own a business and my sales decrease due to stock not being delivered. Have the unions actions not effectively damaged my business and they should therefore be liable?

  • Sprinkler47 - 2012-10-03 06:25

    "we will continue with our protest until our demands are met". So does mean "we", including Vavi, are also happy not to be paid while protesting? Union bosses are quite happy to make these statements knowing that they will keep on earning their income. No thought for workers who are the ones who end up losing out. One week's strike equals around 2% increase sacrificed. But "we" are happy to use our members to gain political points.

  • charles.szente - 2012-10-03 06:28

    The union is acting in bad faith. They conveniently forget that they actually had an agreed deal in place with the Road freight association after months of negotiation, even before the strike, but then backed out and reverted to the 12%. Maybe in years to come it will be known as the Marikana effect. Where you don't get what you want from a negotiation. Let's be honest most negotiations are give and take, but unions are very good at creating distrust, unhappy workers (who are worked up to fight for a stance and settle for less at the negotiating table). Its a recipe for disconent. Definitly not acceptance of reality and true value creation for members. I am not saying all employers are angels btw, but the reality is nornally somwhere in the middle.

  • Kalari - 2012-10-03 06:39

    "Even if we fail to convince the employer on Wednesday, we will continue with our protest until the employer meets our demands," Vavi said. So what is the point of negotiations. What is the point of unions.

      magatikele.magatikele - 2012-10-03 15:07

      As i said early that poor leadership and the government that does not take the future of this country serious. We need change, the people need proper leadership. The is no need for negotiations at this stage. Let Vavii do what he want to do and manage to creat more unemployment.

  • dean.polley.3 - 2012-10-03 07:00

    How about "Demand NOT what your country can do for you, but what YOU can do for your country"

  • johan.r.erasmus - 2012-10-03 07:29

    My mind is made up. I was going to buy more delivery vehicles, to expand our business. I have been inundated with applications for driver jobs and thought that it was a good time to take a positive step, as we have been negotiating more business. Message to the trade unions. You have killed that option. Out investor has withdrawn their interest.

  • sidney.gilroy - 2012-10-03 07:36

    Only employ Zimbabwean and Moz drivers for your trans-border loads. So much less hassle. So much more loyalty.

      ntsika.nkabinde - 2012-10-03 08:05

      i also employ Zimbabwens as well, loyalty, honesty and commited people as well

  • ntsika.nkabinde - 2012-10-03 08:09

    typical South african mentality, "entitlement" i hate this attitude with all my heart, this thing is simple if you are not happy with your job get another one or start your own, as simple as that and stop causing havock, we are trying to better ourselves here that why we have businesses and jobs as well Nxaaa!!!!!

      gerald.umraw - 2012-10-03 10:30

      ntsika i wish it were that simple but i do share in your enthusiasm. Starting a new job or business just because one is unhappy with the current one is a dream most South Africans cannot afford no matter which side of the race or color spectrum one falls on. But i do pray that one day soon we will get there.

  • guyp1 - 2012-10-03 10:31

    I just love how all these unskilled workers are now starting strikes to get salaries that are ludicrous. A lot of skilled workers don't even get that pay, yet you don't see them striking. The difference in mentality is that the skilled are willing to work for their pay and work their way up the pay ladder. Those that are unskilled just demand better pay and don't think that hard work has anything to do with it. I can understand hazard pay and also a salary of R5000-R6000 for certain truck drivers, but not all. Anyone could just get a truck drivers license, get a job as a driver, strike and demand higher pay, according to these people. Makes no sense.

  • wessel.leroux - 2012-10-03 12:51

    So while they marching our cops are fleeing as well as the rest of us who drive our own vehicles to net be set alight by petrol bombs or beaten by rocks and other objects...

      magatikele.magatikele - 2012-10-03 15:13

      How long are we gonna suffer due to lawleness. We need to end this. Now is the time.

  • barneydeklerk - 2012-10-03 13:27

    The difference between the employer's offer 8.5% and the union's demand 12% is a mere R227-00 a month for a code 14 driver. Multiply that by 12 months and you have what the driver has lost in wages so far. Please explain the purpose of these strikes, because the employee is not getting anything out of it.

      magatikele.magatikele - 2012-10-03 15:17

      Let me tell un the real reason why the employees are striking in the trasport sector. The union has just split recently and it want to show its memebers that it is true union that is there for them. Bearing in mind that only union leaders are showing off, is of no help to the employees. What a sad day.

  • bnaidoo1 - 2012-10-03 14:45

    Beware of a company called TPS - Transport Payment Solutions, they will run your truck, and not pay you, as promised.

  • francis.mubaiwa.7 - 2012-10-05 10:58

    people this is how Zimbabwe went down don't forget, if these strikes are allowed to continue south Africa will go the same way. please Mr Zuma do something about this

  • eben.goosen.9 - 2012-10-05 12:53

    Does escalation mean intensified hooliganism like this burning looting destruction of property and possibly lives?

  • duncan.gill1 - 2012-10-05 18:55

    Hire out of work white drivers to drive the trucks and put men with shotguns on board to shoot whoever tries to stop them!!!

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