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Union threatens to protest over taxi drivers' salaries

By unknown | Jul 02, 2008 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Vusi Ndlovu

Vusi Ndlovu

The South African Transport and Allied Workers Union (Satawu) will take to the streets to demand that their members in the taxi industry be paid in accordance with the sectoral wage determination.

The union said yesterday it would engage employers to protect the rights of their members.

Satawu spokesman Boniece Diphoko said their demands were:

lThat the workers must be registered for the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF);

lThat the workers must work a 48-hour week;

lThat leave days due to workers be reflected in their pay slips; and

lThat workers be entitled to paid sick leave.

Diphoko said Satawu was ready to take to the streets if employers failed to meet their demands.

Labour Minister Membathisi Mdladlana reminded taxi operators last Friday that, according to the sectoral determination, taxi drivers should be paid R1740 a month, rank marshals R1392, and other workers should get up to R1281.

If the industry is operated according to the law it will improve the working conditions of drivers such as Dumisani Zwane.

"I normally wake up at 3am but during the month when business is bad I queue at 10pm the previous night to make sure that I make the R500 the owner wants every day. I earn R300 a week," Zwane says.

"When I am sick I don't get paid. When the vehicle is taken in for service I don't get paid. I have a wife and two children to support. I am not registered and I don't have benefits, which means if I lose my job I will have no UIF."

South African National Taxi Council spokesman Thomas Masase said his organisation supported the salary scales set out in the Labour Department's wage determination.


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