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Sars employees set to go on strike over 0% salary increase

SA Revenue Service employees will go on strike over the taxman’s refusal to increase their salaries. Picture: Henk Kruger/ANA/African News Agency

SA Revenue Service employees will go on strike over the taxman’s refusal to increase their salaries. Picture: Henk Kruger/ANA/African News Agency

Published May 12, 2022

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Johannesburg - The Public Servants Association (PSA) has given Sars a notice of its intention to go on strike after receiving a certificate of non-resolution of the dispute from the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA).

According to the PSA, the strike notice follows the failed wage negotiations in which the parties deadlocked and could not conclude the wage agreement for 2022/2023.

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“The employer maintained the offer of 0% salary increase throughout the process which was obviously not accepted by labour as the price for basic services, food, fuel and electricity are continuously increasing and thus have a bearing on the affordability for the employees,” the union announced on Thursday.

It complained that Sars had offered 0% salary increase, despite saying last month its tax-revenue collections target was exceeded by 25% or more than R16 billion during the 2020/21 financial year, due to the dedication and hard work of the taxman’s employees.

”It defies logic how the same employees could be rewarded with no salary increase,” the PSA complained.

The union warned the morale of Sars employees was at an all-time low as the employer had over the past three years removed or altered employees’ benefits.

Sars failed to implement the final leg of the three-year wage agreement that was signed in 2019, forcing the PSA to challenge what it described as “an irrational decision” in the North Gauteng High Court, as Sars was not willing to listen or engage unions.

The PSA called on Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana to intervene and ensure the impasse be resolved, lest Sars be shut down and the public not receive any services.

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In a message to its members, the PSA urged them to prepare for the strike action in pursuit of their interests and rights, as Sars is “demonstrating a non-caring and arrogant attitude”.

”Provincial offices are finalising the approval from affected municipalities in order to have pickets and marches on the identified dates. Members can contact their shop stewards and PSA provincial offices for full details on where the picketing and marches will take place,” the union said.

It also wants full member participation to ensure a maximum and effective downing of tools, until Sars is willing to listen and attend to its employees’ plight, it said.

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