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Limpopo health workers suspend strike over new roster system

It’s understood labour unions representing the workers and the department reached an agreement on Saturday to halt the planned strike.

Pictue: 123rf.com

JOHANNESBURG - Limpopo healthcare workers have suspended their planned strike following discussions with the provincial Department of Health.

It’s understood labour unions representing the workers and the department reached an agreement on Saturday to halt the planned strike.

Unions vowed to shut down all public health facilities earlier this week over a new roster that would lead to the reduction of overtime pay.

They claim the new system was implemented without consultation.

The department met with labour unions representing doctors and nurses across all state hospitals and clinics as well as emergency medical services on Saturday morning.

The seven unions, including Nehawu and Denosa - were set to down tools and protest over shift and overtime pay disputes on Monday.

READ: Limpopo health workers to go on strike on Monday over new roster system

The strike, which would have crippled services across the province during a crucial period in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, has now been suspended.

Both parties have also agreed the implementation of a new rooster will be put on hold for two weeks to allow unions to make sufficient inputs

Several talks held in the past collapsed after the department said it had spent nearly R2 billion on overtime over the past two years.

READ: 11,000 Limpopo nurses prepare to strike over roster changes amid COVID

Unions have, however, reiterated their demands for the department to withdraw the roster or face major disruptions at more than 43 hospitals and 400 clinics across the province.

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