City of Tshwane’s striking workers in contempt of court, says Municipality

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The City of Tshwane says workers, who continue to participate in an unprotected wage strike by the South African Municipal Workers Union (SAMWU) and Independent Municipal & Allied Trade Union (IMATU), are in contempt of court.

On Friday, the Labour Court granted the City a permanent court interdict which orders its striking employees to return to work.

Workers affiliated to trade unions SAMWU and IMATU have been on a wage strike since end of July. This has collapsed services across the city and neighbouring townships.

The City says it would need about R600 million if it has to consider any salary increases for its workforce of more than 18 000.

City of Tshwane Executive Mayor Cilliers Brink reiterates the city’s financial position.

“What keeps me up at night, is our financial position. It is not in fact the strike, the fact that we are running out of money at an alarming rate. The fact that last year this municipality like many others made a loss of an access of R2 billion in water and electricity. Those are the critical unless if they return to work and solve those issues then the communities are going to suffer. And we cannot keep an eye on a bouncing ball,” Brink explains.