South African Telekom workers begin three-day strike

South African Telekom workers begin three-day strike

Around 14,000 Telkom employees will be going on strike from today (August 1st) over an unresolved wage dispute with management.

The Communication Workers Union (CWU) and the South African Communications Union (Sacu) have received a certificate of non-resolution from the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA). The certificate allows union members working at Telkom to go on strike from Friday to Tuesday. This amounts to three days where more than half the company’s employees will be on strike. Telkom employs around 25000 people.

Gallant Roberts, CWU general secretary, said: “We are looking at mobilising 14,000 people, but we expect more. Our members have been impatiently waiting.

“The National Executive Committee has confirmed readiness of all members.” Union members met with Telkom on July 28 making numerous demands including a 12.5% increase, gain sharing incentives, medical aid and standby allowance.

Telkom made a final offer of 10.5% – a position it said it would not move from. Telkom has lost key staff members to competitors (mainly Neotel) over the past two years, while directors’ salaries ballooned sixfold from R6.6 million to R35.8m for the year ended March 31, 2008. Reuben September, Telkom’s chief executive, took home an annual R19m in salary and benefits – five times more than his predecessor Papi Molotsane.

This was at a time when the company’s profits fell by 7.6%.

Posted By

Ed
Aug 1 2008 11:55

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