Licensing office strike to hit roadblocks

242-A lady looks a court order that says they need to report for work tomorrow, JMPD head office Johannesburg CBD. Picture:Dumisani Dube 15.12.2015

242-A lady looks a court order that says they need to report for work tomorrow, JMPD head office Johannesburg CBD. Picture:Dumisani Dube 15.12.2015

Published Dec 16, 2015

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The City of Joburg obtained a court order against the striking workers at licensing stations after the head of the department of public safety met with SA Municipal Workers Union (Samwu) representatives on Monday.

However, it will be just a short reprieve because Samwu’s Jack Mokalapa said the union has obtained another strike certificate, so the strike would begin again on December 24.

An agreement signed on Monday listed steps that both parties would take to address the workers’ demands.

But, according to Mokalapa, several issues remain, particularly salary progression and allowances.

“That meeting and those issues were incidental to a mutual-interest dispute that was already in motion from four months ago,” Mokalapa said.

He and Samwu’s chairman at the Joburg metro police department, Archie Ntaba, said they had addressed the striking workers on Tuesday morning and urged them to comply with the court order.

“As a law-abiding union, as much as we disagree with the court order, we will abide by it,” Mokalapa said.

Mokalapa and Ntaba said they had told workers about the consequences of going against the court order, which could include a no-work-no-pay policy or even criminal charges.

The workers, who have been on strike since Thursday, had complained about externally advertised positions requiring no experience and which offered better salaries.

Ntaba emphasised that the new strike certificate included uniformed JMPD officers because the issues applied equally to them.

Mokalapa said this meant the officers would not be taking part in festive season roadblocks.

“We hope management will go and get uniforms themselves and set up roadblocks because we will be on strike,” he said.

Ntaba said Samwu would be meeting with officers to brief them about the situation.

The strike could also include support from Pikitup workers as well as the Johannesburg Road Agency.

The Star

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