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Pretoria - Private security guards have joined the list of employees around the country who have gone on strike over wage increases.
Gauteng security guards took part in a march on Monday to press demands that their salaries be increased to R7 500. The guards said they were not organised by a union for the march, which ended at the Department of Labour offices on Francis Baard Street.
One of them, Ronald Masoga, said he earned R3 300.
“We work abnormal hours. As the private sector, unions have failed us. We do not get transport or danger allowance like other security guards.
“They do not care about us, just their businesses. I have an eight-year-old child. Do you think I will be able to afford university with the money I am earning?”
Another guard, Christopher Motlogelo, said they had sent several memorandums to the Department of Labour and were had to go on strike.
An employer, who did not want to be named but who watched the strike, said the guards were acting the victim.
“There is already a wage deal that we are working on. The last time they went on a strike, we struck a three-year wage deal.
“The last part of the deal is supposed to be implemented now at the end of September, but they are complaining. Employers have kept their part of the bargain. Now, there is going to be unnecessary violence and people dying on trains.”
Guards who were not part of the strike dressed in civilian clothes to protect themselves from intimidation by striking workers.
Steve Conradie, chief executive of Security Alliance, said there were rumours of a strike, but not many of the group’s members were involved.
While the guards were marching in Pretoria, the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa said it was negotiating with employers this week to try to end the petrol pump attendants’ strike, which enters its ninth day on Tuesday.
Last week, the union rejected a revised wage increase offer of 7.5 percent. The union is demanding an increase of R30 an hour across the board by 2016 in all sectors.