Durban - Disgruntled Expanded Public Works Programme employees have vowed to take their grievances to the ANC regional and provincial offices following the eThekwini Municipality’s “unwillingness” to talk to them.
The employees in the Sydney Road and Alice Street depots have been on strike since Monday. They want to be employed permanently having worked for up to six years on a temporal basis.
The leader of the protest, who identified himself only as Sfiso, said attempts to get a meeting with eThekwini Mayor Zandile Gumede and councillor Mondli Mthembu, chairperson of the city’s Human Settlements and Infrastructure, were unsuccessful.
“They don’t take us seriously. How can they expect us to work on a temporal basis for so long while in 2009 the municipality had converted 13000 workers to permanent employees? We have now reached a point where we have decided to write letters to the ANC regional and provincial offices for intervention,” Sfiso said.
The employees from the two depots are responsible for the cleaning of the city and its surrounding areas.
On Wednesday, the cleaners who claimed to be earning R2000 per month were milling around the two depots, while Warwick Avenue and other parts of the city were not cleaned.
On Tuesday, the city denied having absorbed 13000 cleaners into its payroll but admitted that the city and other departments do hire people who were in the programme through a certain hiring process.