Uber SA faces class-action lawsuit over labour demands

Uber SA faces class-action lawsuit over labour demands

Uber South Africa has found itself on the wrong side of the law amid plans to institute a class-action lawsuit against the company.


Local firm Mbuyisa Moleele Attorneys, assisted by London law firm Leigh Day, announced plans to approach the labour court in Johannesburg at the end of the week to file a lawsuit against Uber BV in the Netherlands and Uber South Africa on behalf of the drivers.

The e-hailing company has been at the storm of a labour dispute with its drivers since last year over unmet demands.

Drivers are calling for the entitlement to rights as employees under South African legislation and will seek compensation for unpaid overtime and holiday pay.

The claim follows a decision by the UK Supreme Court last week that Uber drivers should be legally classified as workers rather than independent contractors.

“Uber’s argument that it is just an app does not hold water when its behaviour is that of an employer. The current model exploits drivers: They are effectively employees but do not benefit from the associated protections,” says lawyer Zanele Mbuyisa.

“We are issuing a call to workers to stand up for their rights and join the class action against Uber.”

The lawyers believe the UK ruling should set a precedence.


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