The nationwide #BusStrike continues

Thousands of commuters could be left stranded if no agreement is reached between bus companies and drivers.

 

Striking bus drivers have vowed to continue intensifying their protest action until employers give in to their demands.

Negotiation talks between employers and unions broke down on 12 April.

Members of the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) have rejected the latest wage offer by employers in the bus passenger sector.

In response to the strike by drivers, employers requested to meet and negotiate with unions at the bargaining council, which is being chaired by the CCMA.

Read: Commuters stranded as #BusStrike hits

According to acting Numsa spokesperson, Phakamile Hlubi, the employers made the following offer:

  • Nine per cent across the board wage increase
  • Overtime pay for drivers, but only after they have worked a 16-hour shift
  • An increase in the night-shift allowance by 10 per cent
  • An increase of 10 per cent for cross-border allowance.

“As Numsa, we reject this offer with the contempt it deserves. The fact that employers are not willing to offer a double-digit increase and are unwilling to pay the co-driver for his or her services when they are not driving is simply a disgrace. Furthermore, employers have the nerve to propose that our members should only be paid overtime after they have worked a 16-hour shift,” Hlubi said.

She added that offers made by the employers prove that they intend to continue abusing their members and putting their lives, as well those of passengers and motorists at risk by forcing drivers to work long hours.

Hlubi also dismissed claims that Numsa rejected an offer from the bus company, Autopax.

“No formal offer was made to us by Autopax. We are not entertaining any offers which do not come through the bargaining council.”

The strike is already negatively affecting long-distance commuters and their Easter weekend plans. Boipelo Mooketsi had to find alternative transport to Kimberley.

“When I arrived here at Park Station, I was told that my bus trip has been cancelled because of the strike. I now have to fly, which is even more expensive.”

Also read: Nationwide bus strike hits Rea Vaya

Will the continued bus strike affect your holiday plans? Tell us how you feel about it on WhatsApp 079 439 5345.

  AUTHOR
Belinda Pheto

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