Unions gear up for mass marches

2011-07-12 07:33

Johannesburg - Two unions involved in key sector strikes countrywide will step up their action on Tuesday, with mass marches planned for Durban and Johannesburg.

Congress of SA Trade Unions General Secretary Zwelinzima Vavi is expected to lead a National Union of Metalworkers of SA (Numsa) march in Durban from 9:00.

Thousands of workers in the engineering sector were expected to gather at the King Dinizulu statue, opposite Durban Christian Centre.

Workers would then hand over a memorandum to Seifsa at the Durban City Hall.

More than 120 000 engineering workers are demanding pay rises ranging from 10% to 13%, and a ban on labour brokers.

The strike in the engineering industry - which began last week - is being led by Numsa, the Metal and Electrical Workers' Union (Mewusa), and the SA Equity Workers' Association (Saewa).

About 70 000 fuel and other workers joined them on Monday, pushing for a minimum salary of R6 000 per month and a 40-hour work week.

This strike could see supplies of medicine and petrol interrupted.

Those involved in the second strike are expected to gather at 10:00 in Johannesburg to march to the Chamber of Mines in the city centre.

Unions involved in the Johannesburg march included the Chemical, Energy, Paper, Printing, Wood, and Allied Workers' Union (Ceppwawu), the General Industries Workers' Union of SA (Giwusa) and the South African Chemical Workers' Union (Sacwu).

Metro police said traffic would be diverted in the CBD. The march was expected to start at the Workers' Library in Newtown and proceed down Miriam Makeba, Market, Simmonds and Marshall and Holland streets.

Last week, violence during the strike resulted in one death and six injuries.

  • Jakkals - 2011-07-12 07:54

    Nou wonder ek, wie betaal hulle salarisse as hulle so staak?

      Pikkie - 2011-07-12 09:31

      Niemand nie!

  • Liberty - 2011-07-12 08:27

    And when companies have to downsize and retrench to minimize their losses CUSATU is going to wonder why half of them lost their jobs a few months from now

      idgara - 2011-07-12 09:17

      Good point! I doubt the communist union leaders ever thought of that! It would be great if all companies that are forced to implement this huge increase start implementing retrenchments in the next month or so!

  • The Gecko - 2011-07-12 08:43

    These unions are reminding me more and more of a toddler throwing a tantrum in a shop, for a sweet. Give in once, and the toddler learns that it works, and in future if you refuse, the tantrum will only get worse and worse until it threatens to drive you insane. Every time the employers give in to these increasingly unreasonable "demands", they strengthen the unions' resolve to get more and more out of employers, with little regard for what the ever-increasing cost of labor is doing to the economy, and to job-creation...

  • Creeky - 2011-07-12 08:53

    More public property to be DESTROYED!!!!!!!!! ALl that rubbish that will line the streets AFTER the march... OMG... sorry.... the RUBBISH is ALREADY LINING THE STREETS!!!

  • amabok - 2011-07-12 09:01

    The unions leaders live in a fantasy world where they believe that they can dictate the terms of employment to companies. They fail to understand the basic principles of market economics. The reality is that there is at least 25% unemployment (probably much higher) in this country which is largely a result of union actions over several years which has driven up the relative cost of domestic labour. South Africa does not exist in a vaccuum, jobs are being lost offshore to India, China, Brazil etc where the unit production costs are increasingly cheaper than South Africa. The outflux of jobs and the resulting increase in domestic unemployment can only continue in the wake of unrealistic union demands and distruptive strikes.

  • DeonL - 2011-07-12 09:06

    Employers should inforce the no work no pay rule.

  • GTZ - 2011-07-12 09:10


  • maco - 2011-07-12 09:28

    I wonder what would happen if all the employers went on strike to protest all the employee strikes! As a tax payer I want to go on strike for the disruption in public services, road closures (due to this strike) and valuble resources (SAPS) wasted on these strikes!

  • TRBL - 2011-07-12 09:30

    Its just another phase of the communist revolution. Giving more to those who don't have and taking from those who do have with the aim of getting rid of class distinction, everyone on the same level. "Utopia". But that's only until I realize working as hard as I always have wont benefit me any more and those who are now poor realize they barely have to work at all to get what they want. Then we will be just another Communist Failure (tm). It seems like hindsight is a "western" thing.

  • dumbbumb - 2011-07-12 09:34

    I hope unions get what they asking for sooner rather than later

  • Independent Address - 2011-07-12 09:39

    In a country with such a high unemployment rate one has to wonder why they don't just get fired and replaced with the millions of people looking for jobs? Oh wait... the UNIONS won't let that happen. Sometimes liberalism goes too far

  • Lekker Jan - 2011-07-12 10:18

    Eesh, Babba....

  • devtheron - 2011-07-13 08:39

    the only time an entrepeneur would take his money out of the bank, is if he feel, that he would stand a better chance of creating more income from his investment, than the "intrest" the bank would give him. a person must be stupid to invest his money into the south african labour. The unions do nothing to educate and skill their members in order to make them more attractive to the enterpreneur. (even thou they pay membership fees) It seem you have to give the skills yourself, then pay a salary that someone is worth, even thou he cannot do the job, and the poor enterpreneur must suffer and take all the risk on him! rather keep your investment safe, because as soon as your workers see you make profit, then YOU are guilty, and suffer all hell will break loose, cause jelousy is reality, and greed make people shake, and fight over things that you have in your pocket, and all they did was coming to the party.... because of YOUR mind!!! this is the reason why the rich is richer, and the poor is poorer, and the criminals who must take from the rich and distribute it to the poor. They becoming so good at it, that they can steal land from those that cannot speak/understand their minds. i wonder many times why God bring this on us, and then I get the answer, it is because He love us, and want us to be strong, because God is on our side. honest people, we we must choose wisdom, and love.

  • pages:
  • 1