Prasa’s long-distance bus subsidiary, Autopax, operates Translux and City-to-City coaches. Picture: Simphiwe Mbokazi African News Agency (ANA)
Prasa’s long-distance bus subsidiary, Autopax, operates Translux and City-to-City coaches. Picture: Simphiwe Mbokazi African News Agency (ANA)

Autopax workers are demanding their salaries be paid or threaten to down tools

By Sisonke Mlamla Time of article published Nov 12, 2021

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Cape Town - Employees at state-owned bus operator Autopax, who have not been paid their salaries, have threatened to down tools, demanding that all salaries are paid every month without fail and delay.

The National Union of Metalworkers of SA (Numsa) regional secretary Vuyo Lufefe said the union was concerned because workers have still not received payment of their salaries for the month of October, and they only received half of their salary in September.

Lufefe said at the same time there has been no response to the memorandum of demands which workers handed over to the Minister of Transport Fikile Mbalula, as well as the management of the Passenger Rail Agency of SA (Prasa) when they marched to the Department of Transport on October 29.

Prasa spokesperson Andiswa Makanda said the matter was being handled by the Department of Transport.

Makanda said Numsa handed its memorandum of demands to the minister, and a way forward would be communicated by the minister.

She directed queries to the ministry.

When the Cape Argus contacted Mbalula’s spokesperson Lawrence Venkile, he directed media queries to Autopax or Prasa.

“I trust that you appreciate that the department cannot comment on the operational matters at Autopax,” said Venkile.

Their demands included that Prasa and the Ministry of Transport sanction a forensic audit into Autopax’s finances and to take drastic steps against those who would be found to have violated the Public Finance Management Act (PFMA) in any way embezzled finances of the company or acted in a corrupt way.

“Prasa must commission an investigation into the probity of employment of staff whether it is in concert with the company’s recruitment policies and practices,” said the workers.

They said Prasa and the Ministry of Transport must investigate whether the recent disposal of buses is compliant with Treasury Regulation and PFMA.

Numsa and the SA Transport and Allied Workers Union (Satawu) demanded Prasa’s group chief executive Zolani Matthews to resign or be removed, stating that his attitude towards the unions clearly demonstrated that he was not fit to be a public servant.

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Cape Argus

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