9 Samwu members injured in Pikitup protest

Samwu claims police used rubber bullets to disperse the protesters in the Johannesburg CBD.

Police stand off with striking Pikitup members in Braamfontein. Picture:Kgothatso Mogale/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Nine people have been injured during a Pikitup protest in the Johannesburg CBD.

Thousands of waste removal workers gathered outside Johannesburg mayor Parks Tau's office this afternoon, demanding their grievances be addressed.

The workers affiliated with the South African Municipal Workers' Union (Samwu) are calling for salary increases and better working conditions.

Police then intervened to disperse the crowd.

It's not yet clear exactly how the nine Pikitup workers were injured.

#PikitupStrike [Watch] Workers singing outside Parks Tau's office. TK pic.twitter.com/kh1jdlt9xF

Samwu claims police used rubber bullets to disperse the workers who were marching through the streets of the CBD.

Samwu spokesperson Conel Mackay said, "The blood of these workers is flowing, they came innocently to raise innocent and genuine grievances, but they were shot at."

An official from the city addressed the angry workers and promised their grievances would be taken up with the mayor.

#PikitupStrike SAMWU members have gathered outside Joburg Mayor Parks Tau's office. TK pic.twitter.com/UoOvcQVrqr

#PikitupStrike This is how several roads look in the Joburg CBD. TK pic.twitter.com/3DYADvhCRE

While rubbish starts to pile up around Johannesburg, Pikitup workers say they won't return to their posts until both management and Tau agree to better working conditions.

Samwu has accused Pikitup of undermining workers' demands and has also called for the company's managing director to step down.

Mackay said, "We want this city to work. If this management cannot respond to our demands, then maybe they must give way."

He says they will not back down until their grievances are addressed.

"At this stage all the depos are at a standstill as far as I know."

The strike, which started yesterday, has affected all depos in Johannesburg.

Picture: Kgothatso Mogale/EWN.