Saftu announced it will embark on a strike over what it terms "the biggest attacks on working-class people and trade unions since apartheid ended. Picture:Ayanda Ndamane/African News Agency/ANA

Johannesburg - Thousands of workers are starting to arrive in Newtown, Johannesburg, for the South African Federation of Trade Unions (Saftu) nationwide strike. 

Saftu earlier this week announced it will embark on a general strike over what it terms "the biggest attacks on working-class people, trade unions and the poor" since the end of apartheid. 

The federation's more than 20 unions, including Numsa and Tirisano Transport Workers Union (Taswu), are taking part in the march to put pressure on government not to implement the R20 per hour national minimum wage bill.

National Union of Metalworkers of SA (Numsa) member Sphiwe Zondi said government must take workers seriously. 

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"As Numsa members we are here to ticket [President Cyril] Ramaphosa's decisions towards the working class. Things expensive and we can't afford to be paid little money. The working class is the most affected class in this county," said Zondo. 4

Watch: #SAFTU members singing and dancing. The song played here asks "Ramaphosa who killed workers in #Marikana?" @ReporterStar @TheStar_news @IOL pic.twitter.com/NHIOgHR95l

Workers are wearing T-shirts of their unions and are singing anti-Ramaphosa songs. One of the songs questions Ramaphosa's role in the Marikana massacre where miners were shot dead by police. 

Neo Molotsi from Young Nurses said workers play a huge role in the country's economy. 

"We are here to demand our money. Things are expensive and the salary is still the same. We are supposed to be taken care of because the working class plays crucial role in the country and its economy," said Molotsi. 

March route in Johannesburg: 

* Marchers will meet at Newtown Precinct and head down Miriam Makeba street

* They will then turn right into Lilian Ngoyi Street

* And then turn right into Simmonds Street where they will hand over a memorandum to the Office of the Premier

* They will then turn right into Anderson Street

* Before turning right into Pixley ka Seme Street where they will hand over a memorandum to the Chamber of Mines and Gauteng Health Department.

* They will go up Pritchard Street before;

* Turning left into Rissik Street 

* Then turn left into de Korte where they will hand over a memorandum to the Labour 

* They'll then head back to Newtown Precinct

@SthembisoMedia 

The Star