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Numsa to challenge court order preventing strike in plastic sector

About 10,000 workers downed tools last month demanding a 15% salary increase.

FILE: Numsa-affiliated workers during a protest. Picture: @Numsa_Media/Twitter

JOHANNESBURG – The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) says it will challenge a temporary contempt of court order preventing employees from striking in the plastic sector.

About 10,000 workers downed tools last month demanding a 15% salary increase.

They also want companies to pay them R40 an hour again, instead of the new rate of around R20.

The Plastics Convertors Association of South Africa was granted the contempt order by the Labour Court after it went to court claiming that Numsa members were violent during the strike.

Numsa's Phakamile Hlubi-Majola says employers are refusing to talk with workers.

"We will be challenging this temporary court order. We maintain that our strike is peaceful [and] it is not unusual for strikes to be infiltrated by criminal elements. And the court has not yet made a determination on whether those who are involved in these activities were, in fact, Numsa members."

(Edited by Thapelo Lekabe)