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Nehawu accepts Sars wage offer, strike finally ends

The union says after extensive consultations, members in many provinces have given a green light to sign the settlement agreement.

FILE: Nehawu and PSA members picket outside the headquarters of the South African Revenue Service on 28 March 2019. Picture: Robinson Nqola/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - The National Education, Health and Allied Workers’ Union (Nehawu) has accepted a new wage offer from the South African Revenue Service (Sars) after lengthy consultations with its members throughout the country.

The union says after extensive consultations, members in many provinces have given a green light to sign the settlement agreement.

Sars says Nehawu and the Public Servants Association (PSA) have signed a three-year deal, which involved an 8% salary hike for the first 12 months and 2% above consumer price index for the following two years.

This means the strike at Sars in now officially over, bringing operations back to normal.

Nehawu, however, says it is not pleased with the new multi-term agreement.

“After consultation with our members, we decided to sign the settlement agreement, which means the strike has ended. They will return to work on Wednesday.”

‘PSA ACCEPTED OFFER PREMATURELY’

Nehawu has hit out at the Public Servants Association claiming it signed a draft settlement wage offer with Sars while negotiations were still ongoing.

The PSA accepted and signed the deal on Sunday following talks behind closed doors, while Nehawu waited to consult its members about the offer.

Nehawu has described the draft agreement signed by the Public Servants Association on Sunday as unflattering.

It says it’s unfortunate that while the PSA agreed to fight the offer by Sars to the bitter end, it went ahead and signed the agreement while the employer had an opportunity to improve the offer.

Nehawu spokesperson Khaya Xaba said: “The PSA accepted the offer prematurely... they really ruined the moment and we’re not happy about that.”

Nehawu says it will wait to see how the new offer benefits its members in the first year.

(Edited by Zamangwane Shange)