CAPE TOWN – The strike action by MultiChoice workers called by the Information and Communication Technology Union (ICTU) in protest of the company’s restructuring process, which includes retrenchments is underway.
The ICTU spokesperson Thabang Mothelo said workers from the Pay-TV service provider gathered at around 1pm in readiness for the strike, which the ICTU had declared would commence at 1:30pm.
Mothelo said the police had been deployed to provide extra security for the service provider. “The gates are closed and workers are out and some are coming out but the intimidation continues internally.”
He said the strike would continue on Monday.
“This strike comes at the time when MultiChoice has deployed new integrated billing system on 21 August and it is experiencing its own failures,” the ICTU said in a statement.
The Pay-TV service provider expressed its disappointment at the call for a strike by the ICTU. The Group executive for corporate affairs Joe Heshu said MultiChoice remained committed to continuing to consult with labour on the proposed restructure in the company’s customer care division.
He said this would be under the guidance of the commissioner appointed by the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA), in line with the Labour Relations Act.
“The threatened strike action is not only unprotected it is also illegal. We call on all parties to act in a manner that will ensure the best outcome for impacted employees.”
ICTU said on Thursday that MultiChoice had sent a letter threatening civil litigation against the union for “launching first historic strike” against the company.
DStv subscribers reportedly struggling with support because of system downtime, according to Mybroadband, which may be aggravated by the strike. DStv subscribers are advised to use the DStv App to try to resolve their account and technical problems.
This is a developing story.