Strike action has a direct influence on our economy. Ethel Hazelhurst, economics writer at Business Report, relays Absa currency strategist Mike Keenan’s statement that last week’s national bus drivers’ strike would affect “a wide range of sectors”.
Adding to the economic despair, staff members at the National Bargaining Council for the Road Freight and Logistics Industry (NBCRFLI) also went on strike.
However, the Road Freight Association states that the two strikes are unrelated and does not include those employed by companies falling under the scope of the NBCRLFI. But this may still have an indirect impact on service delivery in the road freight sector.
In terms of the strike notice issued by the union representing the NBCRFLI’s staff – the SA Commercial, Catering and Allied Workers’ Union (Saccawu) – the strike ran from April 22 to 24. But the NBCRFLI management has put contingency plans in place.
Saccawu spokesman Mike Abrahams noted that workers (many of whom still earn around R4 500 a month) are demanding a 15 percent wage increase, while the NBCRFLI was offering six percent.
As for the bus drivers’ strike, called by the SA Transport and Allied Workers’ Union (Satawu), members are demanding an 18 percent wage increase and an allowance for housing, night-shifts and long-distance journeys. The employers have offered a 6,5 percent wage increase. The disputing parties met at the CCMA on April 23.