NUM declares wage dispute with Eskom

NUM declares wage dispute with Eskom

The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) on Friday declared a wage dispute with Eskom after they reached a deadlock in negotiations.


NUM spokesman Livhuwani Mammburu said in a statement the union "deplores Eskom’s dirty tactics and the arrogant attitude displayed during the wage negotiations".

The NUM wants a wage increase of 12 percent for the highest paid employees and 13 percent for the lowest-paid. Eskom is offering seven percent.

Mammburu said the union and the employer could not find common ground by Friday afternoon and the dispute would be referred to the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation, and Arbitration (CCMA) on Monday.

"The NUM is extremely disappointed and angry that Eskom still refuses to close the apartheid wage gap within the company," he said.

"It is a matter of fact that white employees still earn more money than black employees within Eskom, even when they do the same job. This is a serious discriminatory practice that Eskom must address as soon as possible."

Among other demands, the NUM wants a one year wage agreement, selling of leave, closing of the "apartheid wage gap", and a housing allowance of R5000 a month.

Last month, the NUM accused Eskom executives of paying themselves massive bonuses of R6 million each and "leaking" a document on payments to workers in a bid to "weaken" the union during wage negotiations.

Eskom spokesperson Khulu Phasiwe was not immediately available on Friday. Last week Eskom concluded three loan facilities with the African Development Bank (AfDB), collectively worth about R20 billion.

The loans will be used to fund the power utility’s general capital requirements, including new build projects, maintenance and refurbishment of generation plant, transmission, and distribution infrastructure, and skills upgrading.

This came soon after Eskom reported a sound financial and operational footing compared to a year ago as net profit went up to R4.6 billion in the year ended March, from a net profit of R200 million. - ANA

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