Motorists advised to avoid Bara Hospital amid public workers wage protests

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Motorists are advised to avoid the area around the Baragwanath Hospital in Soweto as scores of public servants are protesting at the entrance to the facility.

This follows a deadlock in wage negotiations between unions and government.

The union federations including COSATU, FEDUSA and SAFTU say the planned one-day nationwide strike is part of the ongoing demonstrations ahead of an indefinite strike if the government fails to improve its 3% wage increase offer.

Chris Hani Road is completely blocked off to traffic and striking workers have also barricaded the main entrance to the hospital with burning tyres.

Police have been deployed to the area to monitor the situation as well as to redirect traffic.

Motorists are advised to avoid the area.

The Gauteng department of Health says they are still awaiting a report from the hospital to determine exactly what services have been affected by the strike.

Negotiations for wages in the public sector reached a deadlock after government made what it called a final offer of 7.5% comprising 3% pensionable and 4.5% non-pensionable funds.

Unions have rejected this and are demanding a 10% increase.


Protestors have also gathered in their thousands in Pretoria where they are expected to hand over a memorandum of demands to the National Treasury.

SABC News Reporter Katlego Legodi at Lillian Ngoloyi Street provides an update: