Labour unions affiliated with the South African Federation of Trade Unions (Saftu) have embarked on protests in solidarity with striking Clover workers globally.
Unions are calling for a boycott of the company’s products for embarking on a restructuring process and cutting jobs.
The demonstrations are taking place across the country, including Cape Town and Johannesburg.
— SAFTU (@SAFTU_media) January 27, 2022
Saftu Spokesperson, Trevor Shaku says the disputes by workers remain unsolved.
There has been engagement indeed between the union, the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (DTI); but also the company itself. Although progress has been made for engagements, there is nothing tangible that solves the dispute by workers,” says Shaku.
Over 2 000 workers could be jobless: SAFTU
Earlier this month, Saftu called on the DTI to engage with the Competition Commission over the long-running dispute with Clover.
SAFTU’s General Secretary, Zwelinzima Vavi says over 2 000 workers stand to lose their jobs.
“[The] problems started in 2019 when the Competition Commission, despite warnings from FAWU (Food and Allied Workers Union) and GIWUSA (General Industries Workers Union of SA), that they should be opposing the merger, but they went ahead and approved the integration and now we are paying the consequences of that. They are now laying off or retrenching 2 000 workers. We are going back to the Department of Trade and Industry to say you better speak to the Competition Commission to reverse the decision on this measure,” says Vavi
Two weeks ago, employees protested outside the DTI in Pretoria. Workers embarked on a national strike, demanding that Clover reinstate those who’ve been dismissed, to halt retrenchments and to divest from Milco.
Vavi addressed supporters:
-Additional reporting by Risha Maduray