POWER utility Eskom says plans to make sure that the proposed strike doesn’t affect residents have been put in place.
The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) and the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) have vowed to down tools on Thursday, 14 June, demanding a 15 per cent salary increase.
In a statement Eskom said while it sympathised with it’s employees, it could not afford the raise.
“Eskom sympathises with its over 47 000 employees who have worked very hard to help keep the lights on during the past financial year. However, due to the difficult financial situation that the company currently faces, Eskom has decided to offer no salary increases this year,” said the utility.
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NUM said it was ‘disgusted’ by what it calls ‘brutal arrogance shown by the black majority led Eskom negotiating team’.
“The negotiation team has suspended their ability to reason and decided to stick to the straight jacket mandate of 0 per cent to all demands from NUM. We view this approach by the Eskom negotiating team as a wasteful and fruitless exercise. They had the audacity to call a special and highly armed force to intimidate the NUM negotiating team,” said NUM.
The company added that it has noted the proposed strike, and sent out a stern warning to its employees.
“Eskom has noted the statements made by the trade unions about their intentions to embark on an industrial action this Thursday. Eskom has been designated as an essential service provider, and therefore our employees are reminded that they are not allowed to participate in strike actions,” said Eskom.