Ugu Municipality defends firing 42 striking workers

The dismissed workers embarked on a strike in support of nine shop-stewards who were suspended after they allegedly interrupted a disciplinary hearing in December last year.

Samwu-affiliated workers gather outside the Ugu District Municipality offices demanding that the mayor addresses them on 30 January 2020. Picture: Nkosikhona Duma/EWN

DURBAN - Forty-two workers have been fired in the drought-stricken Ugu District Municipality on KwaZulu-Natal's south coast.

The dismissed workers embarked on a strike in support of nine shop-stewards who were suspended after they allegedly interrupted a disciplinary hearing in December last year.

Samwu has accused the municipality of victimising the workers because they took a stand against corruption.

The union's Mthandeni Ngcobo: "There's corruption here. We've got companies that are looting the municipality to the ground, Umzansi Construction companies... those are the companies that are colluding to milk the municipality of all the funds and everything that is still remaining."

Municipal manager Dhanpalan Naidoo said that they acted in accordance with the law because the workers refused to end their illegal strike.

"On Monday, we issued an ultimatum the employees to return to work or else face dismissal. They refused to return to work and therefore 42 of them, as per the ultimatum, were dismissed at 1pm on Tuesday."

WATCH: Ugu Municipal workers striker over alleged corruption