Johannesburg - Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation Minister Lindiwe Sisulu has slammed the strike declared by Amatola Water workers, who downed tools last Friday despite being essential service workers.
This comes after Sisulu intervened to resolve their wage dispute, which saw water supplies for several Eastern Cape communities being threatened.
Amatola Water is responsible for the water supply to local municipalities of Amathole and Chris Hani districts.
At the heart of the dispute between the essential services utility, which is accountable to Sisulu’s ministry in terms of the Water Services Act, is the payment of 1.5% of the 8% increase as agreed by the Amanzi Bargaining Council for the 2017/18 and 2018/19 financial years.
The Amatola board had indicated this financial year that the utility’s financial position could not afford to pay the 8% wage increase, which culminated in the strike last week by disgruntled workers.