A court case between the City and firefighters represented by the SA Municipal Workers Union (Samwu) is expected to get under way today. Picture: Henk Kruger/African News Agency (ANA)
A court case between the City and firefighters represented by the SA Municipal Workers Union (Samwu) is expected to get under way today. Picture: Henk Kruger/African News Agency (ANA)

Court case over City of Cape Town firefighter salaries gets under way

By Marvin Charles Time of article published Feb 26, 2020

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Cape Town - A court case between the City and firefighters represented by the SA Municipal Workers Union (Samwu) is expected to get under way today in the Labour Court.

The union is demanding to go into a new agreement with the City to challenge the pay structure.

Regional secretary Mike Khumalo said: “Workers are demanding an urgent dialogue between the City and the unions so we can reach a new agreement. The current agreement is outdated and expired.”

Khumalo said they would be picketing outside the labour court today.

In October, firefighters affiliated to Samwu refused to work overtime as they were disputing the pay structure.

The firefighters, who work 24-hour shifts, claim they are not being paid for overtime and are unhappy with the existing deal.

Last year, the City and Samwu agreed to return to regular working hours while the matter was taken to the Labour Court this week.

Hundreds of firefighters employed by the City marched from Voortrekker Road to the Goodwood fire station on Monday, to protest a refusal by the City to compensate them for overtime.

They handed over a memorandum demanding a proper pay structure.

“The current agreement entails workers working long hours which are not prescribed with the Basic Conditions of Employment Act. We want to go into a proper agreement out of goodwill with the City. The members are not happy, they want to get paid for their overtime,” Khumalo said.

Executive director of safety and security, Richard Bosman, said: “The march and picket was approved by the relevant authorities.

“The City’s door is still open to discussions in order to find an amicable solution between the parties.”

@MarvinCharles17

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Cape Argus

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