Who? SA

Trade union federations slap govt with 2-week deadline to respond to demands

Wednesday’s march was part of a nationwide strike spearheaded by trade union federations, for better working conditions and an end to corruption.

Workers affiliated to different trade unions marched from Burgerspark to the Treasury in Pretoria on 7 October 2020. Picture: Abigail Javier/EWN

CAPE TOWN – Trade union federations on Wednesday said they were giving government 14 days to respond to demands relating to corruption, unemployment and gender-based violence.

Demonstrators yesterday gathered in Langa, before making their way to the Cape Town Civic Centre, the Western Cape Legislature and Parliament.

The march was part of a nationwide strike spearheaded by trade union federations, for better working conditions and an end to corruption.

A few hundred workers from various sectors voiced their concerns in Cape Town yesterday.

One policeman, who contracted COVID-19 a few months ago, said he was concerned about poor working conditions as his police station was closed three times because of members contracting the virus.

As a frontline worker, the officer said he was also concerned about a second wave.

A Mitchell’s Plain resident is pleading to government to provide jobs to those in poor communities.

“Gangsterism is huge in our community. Why? Because there are no jobs. Enough is enough. We’ve had enough of the killings and the crime. We are the people. They are the government. They are supposed to serve us.”

‘AN EXERCISE IN FUTILITY’

Meanwhile, the Cape Chamber of Commerce and industry described Wednesday’s so-called national socio-economic strike as “poor timing on the part of unions”.

The organisation said it was an exercise in futility as thousands of jobs were lost due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the subsequent lockdown.

“Government workers who depend on taxpayers for their wages should think twice about calling a strike to ostensibly force government to agree to inflation beating wage increases,” said chamber president, Janine Myburgh.

WATCH: National strike: ‘Workers unite, you’ve nothing to lose but your chains’



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