Unions demand meeting with Nene, Gordhan & Eskom board amid wage talks

On Tuesday, talks ended with no agreement as workers remained firm on their demand for an 8% salary increase for this year and then 8.5% for the next two years.

FILE: Numsa's Irvin Jim (C) at a media briefing. Picture: Katleho Sekhotho/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - The three unions involved in wage negotiations at Eskom are now demanding a meeting with Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene, Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan and the utility’s board.

On Tuesday, talks ended with no agreement as workers remained firm on their demand for an 8% salary increase for this year and then 8.5% for the next two years.

Unions have agreed not to disclose the details of the meeting, only revealing that the parastatal made a new offer which is higher than the previous 7%.

National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa’s general secretary Irvin Jim said: “We’re not far from each other and we think it is the Eskom board and management that has been giving the current management that is negotiating with us difficulties. We’ve now decided that we’ll escalate these negotiations at that level.”

The National Union of Mineworkers' negotiator Kangela Baloyi says they are already skeptical about the new offer.

“We’re going to go to all the provinces to talk to our members and check if they are happy with the offer. But as the negotiating team, our judgment is that it’s not a very good offer.”

(Edited by Winnie Theletsane)