Satawu calls on govt to intervene to end bus strike

The nationwide bus strike which started earlier this week, left hundreds of thousand commuters scrabbling for alternative means to travel.

FILE: Many commuters were left stranded as a national bus strike got underway on 18 April 2018. Picture: Graig-Lee Smith/EWN

JOHANNESBURG – Unions representing striking transport workers say commuters should brace themselves for further inconveniences until their demands are met.

Negotiations between the two parties, facilitated by the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA), deadlocked on Friday.

The nationwide bus strike which started earlier this week, left hundreds of thousand commuters scrabbling for alternative means to travel.

The unions held a media briefing in Woodmead to outline some of the reasons why they have resolved to intensify their strike.

The unions refused to accept an 8% offer for this year and a further 8.5% for next year, saying that offer included dropping other core demands.

Those demands included the dual driver payment, insourcing and the payment of night shift hours.

The South African Transport and Allied Workers Union’s Solomon Mahlangu says, “This strike is affecting our communities negatively and the rest of the economy. We’re calling on the government to intervene in the interest of workers.”

Workers were willing to settle at 9,5% wage increment for this year, and a further 9% next year.

Employers however maintained a rigid stance and rejected all movements the unions suggested.

The bus strike is expected to continue- at least until employers agree to some- if not all of the terms the unions have put through.