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Cosatu favours talking with govt about worker increases, PSA will to go to court

Public servants found out when they received their monthly pay that government had not kept to its 2018 wage agreement.

FILE: Thousands of public servants march in the Pretoria CBD as they make their way to Union Buildings on 10 August 2010. Picture: EWN

JOHANNESBURG - While Cosatu said on Wednesday it supported further negotiations with government over the wage increase stalemate, the Public Servants Association will approach the courts.

Public servants found out when they received their monthly pay on Wednesday that the government had not paid out salary increases in accordance with a 2018 wage agreement.

Trade unions in the public service have told of angry workers who were anticipating the wage increases that ranged between 4.4% and 5.4% for this year.

However, with government coffers in tatters, the increases were not effected, but without a notification to workers.

The government is on a drive to save R160 billion from the public wage bill as it reforms public finances.

Cosatu joint mandating committee chairperson Mugwena Maluleke said on Wednesday that the federation hoped the mediation process due to start at the Public Service Coordinating Bargaining Council (PSCBC) would yield positive outcomes.

"It is only after we have satisfied the internal processes and if we do not find favour in that, then we will on an urgent basis ask the court to give a declaratory order that would be ordering the state to honour the collective agreement."

The Public Service and Administration Department has refused to comment, saying it wants to allow the PSCBC process to conclude first.