Numsa threatens national strike if motor sector snubs proposed 12% wage hike

Wage negotiations collapsed on Thursday, after two days of deliberations between the union and employers in the sector, including the Retail Motor Industry and the Fuel Retailers’ Association.

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JOHANNESBURG - The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) has called on the motor industry to give into workers' wage demands in a bid to prevent a sector-wide strike.

The union tabled several demands including calls for a 12% increase across the board for the 90,000 workers it represents, but the industry came in with offers far below the demand.

Wage negotiations collapsed on Thursday, after two days of deliberations between the union and employers in the sector.

The talks included the Retail Motor Industry and the Fuel Retailers Association.

During wage negotiations with workers in the motor sector, Numsa rejected the offer made by the Fuel Retailers Association of a 4% wage increase across the board for all petrol attendants and 3% for cashiers over three years.

In addition to that, the union also wants a night shift and transport allowance, as well as medical aid for garage workers.

But Retail Motor Industry failed to make an offer altogether.

Numsa spokesperson Phakamile Hlubi-Majola said workers were willing to take their grievances to the picket lines in the coming weeks.

“We are at the mercy of the CCMA and employers. The ball is in their court. They have the power to stop the looming national strike in the motor sector if they put a meaningful offer on the table.”

Hlubi-Majola added while the union will also be approaching the CCMA soon on the picketing rules, they hope the employers will come to the table with a better offer.