Part-timers wait in vain for their pay
THERE is nothing as exciting as getting a phone call from an employer confirming your employment after a long search.
"That call just blesses you. It means getting an income at the end of the month and marks the beginning of better things to come," said Vuyiswa Stephens, one of five readers who has not received remuneration for her services after being placed at Eskom.
All five employees were placed at Eskom by Insearch Employment on a temporary basis.
They were all filling in for employees who were on maternity leave at various Eskom offices.
All accused the placement agency of pocketing their payments after receiving the money from Eskom.
They claim Insearch owes them a total of R60000 in salaries.
Stephens said she submitted her curriculum vitae at a number of placement agencies when she lost her job two years ago.
She has not been employed permanently since 2010 but has been called on to work for three-month periods by various companies each time an employee was away on maternity leave.
Each time she got paid for her services without a problem, she said. She said she never expected to have a problem getting paid for work done.
Stephens said on the agreed payday an Insearch employee told her she would not be paid because Eskom had delayed processing her invoice.
"As time went by I realised they were lying to me. Their excuses for not paying my salary changed every time I enquired," Stephens said.
But she continued working in the vain hope that the agency would pay her.
As proof of payment to the Insearch placement agency, Eskom gave her all the remittance advice showing paid invoices, including hers.
Perseverance Mothlaba, another victim, said: "When you are desperate you don't even see when you are being exploited."
She said she had been a victim of exploitation by Insearch before.
Mothlaba's first experience was in 2010, when she was not paid for two weeks at Eskom.
She said she thought Insearch CEO Vionne Tembo was feeling guilty when she called her to tell her she had a three-month job at Eskom for her.
"I never thought she would put me through the same experience I had gone through in 2010," she said.
She accepted the placement and three months later she owed money to friends, neighbours and relatives who had lent her bus fare to work.
"No one I borrowed from wanted to believe I had not been paid, especially when I told them I was employed by Eskom," she said.
Tembo said Eskom owed her millions and that Public Protector Thuli Madonsela had intervened.
Eskom said it would investigate.