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Post Office strike negotiations collapse

The CWU's Clyde Mervin says the Post Office seems unwilling to come to the table with a fair solution.

FILE: The crippling Post Office strike is in its fourth month. Picture: Facebook.

JOHANNESBURG - Negotiations between the South African Post Office (Sapo) and unions representing workers have collapsed following attempts to end the crippling four month strike.

Last week, the Communications Workers Union (CWU) expressed hope that a resolution to the strike could be found by the end of today.

However, the union now says it feels disappointed by Sapo which it believes is not willing to solve the problem.

CWU president Clyde Mervin says workers have made enough compromises including reducing their original demand for a 15 percent pay hike to just 8 percent.

He says the Post Office seems unwilling to come to the table with a fair solution.

"The Post Office came very rigid, not prepared to resolve anything. We have made even more concessions than what we had initially proposed to them."

In addition, the CWU claims that Sapo has now signed an agreement with another union which does not have collective bargaining rights.

Mervin says at this rate, unions will have no other option but to demand an emergency meeting with Post Office administrator Simo Lushaba.

The state-owned enterprise's latest financial statement indicates a net loss of R359 million.

Several Post Office branches have been forced to shut down as they have not paid this month's rent.

This is the first year the state-owned enterprise has had to operate without a state subsidy.

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