Cosatu approaches CCMA over Pikitup strike

Cosatu approaches CCMA over Pikitup strike

The Congress of SA Trade Unions (Cosatu) has resolved to approach the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) over the drawn-out strike at refuse removal entity Pikitup, it said on Thursday.

Police presence at Pikitup protest JHB_jacanews

"The situation is becoming dire, we took it to the CCMA as we did not get any joy on requests for the MEC [of Cooperative Governance] and the mayor [Parks Tau] to intervene," Gauteng Cosatu secretary, Dumisane Dakile, told reporters in Johannesburg.

"The CCMA mediation process is expected to continue through the weekend … we are hoping that the matter would be settled by Monday, but that would depend on how the city handles this."

SA Municipal Workers Union (Samwu) members have been on an illegal strike for four weeks, with uncollected rubbish piling up across the city. The striking workers are demanding the removal of Pikitup managing director, Amanda Nair, whom they accuse of graft and they also want better wages.

At least 4,000 workers went through a disciplinary process, which was concluded on Tuesday.

Tau told reporters on Wednesday that Pikitup was awaiting a report on the disciplinary hearings. A separate investigation into fresh allegations against Nair was ongoing.

Dakile rubbished the disciplinary process, and said it did not comply with requirements of the Labour Relations Act. He labelled it as "unprocedural".

"We have not seen the outcome of that process, we only hear from media that it has been concluded. That process has procedural defects, people are not allowed to state their case in those disciplinary hearings. It does not comply with the requirements of the labour act, we will reveal more in due in time," said Dakile.

When asked why Cosatu supported an illegal strike, Dakile said the status of the strike "was neither here or there".

"Whether the strike is protected or not is not the issue, the issue of grave concern is the workers who have been very patient with Pikitup since 2011," said Dakile.

"This matter could have been resolved a long time ago … the employer has failed to implement the 2011 agreement with workers. 

"That agreement speaks to the abolition of labour brokers and fixing the salary disparities … that has not happened. The workers have been very patient." - ANA

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