No end to bus strike in sight

Algoa Bus drivers protesting at the Algoa Bus Company depot in Perl Road, Port Elizabeth, as part of the nationwide bus strike regarding wage disputes.
Algoa Bus drivers protesting at the Algoa Bus Company depot in Perl Road, Port Elizabeth, as part of the nationwide bus strike regarding wage disputes.
Image: Deneesha Pillay

The bus strike which has left thousands of people across the country having to find alternate transport for the past four weeks will continue.

This was the dire outcome of the latest round of negotiations between unions and employees.

The latest offer‚ which included a 9% wage increase for year one‚ an 8% increase for year two and various allowances‚ was to have kicked in from the date of signing the agreement‚ which would have been yesterday.

It was this date clause that led to the offer being overwhelmingly rejected.
In a joint statement yesterday‚ five unions said: “We have consulted our members from all the regions in different parts of the country. Our members have overwhelmingly rejected this offer.

“This is because the employers in the sector refuse to backdate the agreement to be applicable on the 1st of April 2018.

“The general practice is that the agreement is backdated to reflect the date when the new wage agreement is supposed to take effect‚ which in this case is the 1st April 2018.

“Instead‚ the employers want the agreement to be implemented from the date of signing and this is unacceptable to our members. We believe they are provoking our members unnecessarily.”

The unions said the bus strike would continue until agreement was reached on the date issue. 

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