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A strike is looming in the Engineering sector

7 July 2017, Posted in Press Releases

The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (NUMSA) participated in wage negotiation dispute meetings with employers in the Engineering sector.

The purpose of the meetings was to resolve the dispute between us and the employer. Unfortunately those talks failed and we have rejected the latest offer from employers.

Our demands remain the same:
We want a 15% in wage increase across the board based on the actual rate that a worker is earning, and not on the minimum rate.
Backdate increase from the 01st July 2017
We demand a two year agreement.
We demand the extension of the agreement to non-parties; this includes non-parties and Employer associations like NEASA and PCASA who fall under the MEIBC.

Employers demands:
Because of the ANC and its National Minimum Wage policy, Employers want to implement a minimum rate of R20 per hour for new entrants to the sector, when the minimum is R40
Employers want to increase wages in terms of the minimum rate instead of what the worker is actually earning
Employers want us to recognize the Plastics Negotiating Forum as a chamber of the MEIBC they want it to be excluded from the main agreement.

NUMSA rejects this offer with the contempt it deserves! This agreement will make working conditions worse. We warned the ANC that the National Minimum Wage they had proposed would have disastrous consequences, but they arrogantly ignored us.

Now their proposal is causing chaos in the Engineering sector by ensuring that workers who fought to earn more, now risk being downgraded to this pathetic poverty wage of R20 per hour.  At the end of the day the ANC will always fight to protect big business and White monopoly capital at the expense of workers and their families!

Employers are lying when they say that those who earn more will not get downgraded. We know that in reality, there is no one to stop them from paying workers half of what they should earn. If we were to agree to this ridiculous proposal, then new workers will suffer, and those already employed will earn less than what they are earning now.

NUMSA has resolved to fight this battle. We will fight to block the greedy Employers from implementing this poverty wage. We have requested a certificate of non-resolution which will allow us to go on strike. We have to wait until the 15th of July to see if we will be granted a strike certificate.

NUMSA will not back down and we will not be bullied. We will fight with all our might to protect the rights of our members and their families, and to ensure a life of dignity for them.

Aluta continua!
The struggle continues!
Issued by Phakamile Hlubi

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