File photo: Yolande Du Preez

Johannesburg - In an attempt to avert Monday’s Gautrain strike, Bombela was expected to continue negotiations with the SA Railways and Harbours Workers’ Union on Saturday.

“The company and the union will meet at 8am. Hopefully we will reach agreement,” Bombela’s spokesman Errol Braithwaite said on Friday.

Earlier in the day the consortium had been locked in talks with union representatives. The union has since given a notice to strike.

But should negotiations fail Braithwaite said the company will set plans in motion for its 53 000 passengers.

The drivers are demanding a nine percent increase which the company initially refused.

Bombela gave a counter offered of 8.2 percent.

This was accepted by the union on condition it was back-dated to July 1. However Bombela refused.

Louis Brockett, Sarhwu acting general secretary, last night said this was the main outstanding issue.

He said if the negotiations break down, the union apologises for the inconvenience.

Braitanworth said Gautrain customers were requested to follow Gautrain on Facebook and Twitter, and also to SMS the word “ALERT” to 32693 to receive service status updates.

Saturday Star