Workers affiliated with the National Union of Public Service and Allied Workers (Nupsaw), at Rhodes University at Makhanda in the Eastern Cape have embarked on a strike.
The union wants to be granted organisational rights to organise and recruit members, to hold meetings on campus, and for the university to debit subscription fees from their members.
Negotiations between the two parties at the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation, and Arbitration (CCMA) reached a deadlock. Provincial Organiser of Nupsaw Lerato Thete says the university claims some of their members have dual membership with other unions at the university.
Thete says the university must conduct a verifying process to substantiate this claim.
“Before us the very same members we organized, they were members of SALISPU. Due to personal reasons, I cannot disclose they have come to join us now as Nupsaw. We said to them the very same members you have come to acknowledge and had working relations with SALISPU what is the difference now, because these are the very same members that have come on board joined Nupsaw, the very same number that used to belong to SALISPU, we don’t understand the inconsistency on your side.”
In a statement, Rhodes University says the union does not have sufficient representative and such does not qualify for the organisational rights afforded to the university’s representative unions.