eThekwini Municipality has approach the central bargaining council to deliberate on the grievances of striking workers.Municipal workers have embarked on protest action following allegations that MK Veterans employed by the municipality were given undue pay rises. This has resulted in streets being blockaded and water turned off to parts of the city. Workers are asking to be elevated to grade 10. “After lengthy consultations between us and the union representatives we have decided to refer the matter to the central bargaining council for further negotiations and determination. Discussions at bargaining council will commence on Monday and are expected to be concluded in 30 days,” said City Manager Sipho Nzuza. “We urge our employees to desist from violent strikes that cripple the operations of the city. Recently we had to spend a lot resources and money to clean up the mess that was left behind by our workers in the central business district.” eThekwini Municipality has obtained a court interdict making it unlawful to participate in the ongoing strike, and a principle of a work no pay will apply to employees who do not report for work, some of which could face disciplinary action.
Nzuza also apologised to residents whose access to basic services has been disrupted.“I welcome the court interdict that was granted against the illegal strike. I also strongly condemn in the strongest terms the illegal strike by municipal workers. The damage to property and basic infrastructure during this illegal strike has seriously derailed our plans aimed at dealing with the after-effects of devastating floods,” said eThekwini Mayor Zandile Gumede.