Rand Water strike called off pending court interdict

Members of the South African Municipal Workers Union (SAMWU) can be seen during a march to Tshwane House where they delivered their memorandum, 7 February 2020, Pretoria. PHOTO: Jacques Nelles

Rand Water has approached the Labour Court in Johannesburg seeking an interdict against a planned strike on Wednesday by the South African Municipal Workers Union (Samwu).

The Citizen reports, Samwu on Monday sent a written notification to Rand Water informing the utility of its intention to embark on an indefinite strike action over wage increases and other grievances.

However, Rand Water’s general manager Teboho Joala confirmed to The Citizen on Wednesday morning they had approached the Labour Court because the strike is illegal and unprotected.

He said the matter was set down for 10am.

On Tuesday, Rand Water spokesperson Justice Mohale said the reason for the strike action was the union’s argument that Rand Water failed to consult with it before making a decision not to pay its employees performance incentive bonuses.

Mohale said the utility disputed Samwu’s claim saying the bonuses are not mandatory.

Samwu is also calling for a R15,000 sectoral minimum wage and a R3,500 housing allowance for all workers, among other demands.

The union said it will be presenting its salary and wage demands at the Amanzi bargaining council, which includes all of the country’s 12 water boards.

Sawmu has yet to respond to Rand Water’s application.