Efforts to establish picketing rules with Transnet unsuccessful: Unions

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The South African Transport and Allied Workers Union (SATAWU) and the United National Transport Union (UNTU) say efforts to establish picketing rules with Transnet management for Monday’s planned national strike have been unsuccessful.

Unions say Transnet is breaking the requirements of the Labour Relations Act by refusing to establish picketing rules.

The Labour court on Friday dismissed an urgent interdict application by Transnet to have the strike declared as unlawful and unprotected.

Transnet loses court bid to declare strike unlawful:

The unions have condemned Transnet for threatening workers with disciplinary action if they join the strike on Monday.

SATAWU’s head of communications Amanda Tshemese says, “The employer has refused to sign the picketing rules, not just that, the employer is also harassing and threatening our members. They sent SMS to the workers threatening that should they participate in the strike on Monday, there’s going to be disciplinary actions against them because the strike is illegal and they could be fired. This despite the court ruling that the strike is protected and legal. The ruling was made this afternoon, we have warned the employer to stop misleading the workers, the strike is going on Monday, it’s legal and it’s protected.”

Frustrate unions

UNTU President, Steven Leshabana, has accused Transnet of attempting to frustrate unions by refusing to sign picketing rules for SATAWU and UNTU’s planned national strike on Monday the 10th of October.

He says the unions and Transnet’s management will meet with three commissioners from the Commission for Conciliation Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) with the purpose of providing an intervention regarding the picketing rules.

Leshabana says the CCMA should have finalised picketing rules before issuing a certificate of non-resolution when all the parties met last month.

UNTU and SATAWU have rejected Transnet’s 3% wage offer and have demanded wage increases of between 12 and 13.5%.

“We believe that on Monday because we will be meeting with the three commissioners from CCMA we will be able to find a solution. So on Monday, we believe that we’ll be having the picketing rules and we might also have a solution. We believe that the CCMA commissioners that are coming might change the whole thing and we might end up getting a resolution to this dispute.”

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