back to work

TRIUMPHANT: Construction workers are expected to resume work today following the signing of
a 12 percent wage increase after a week-long strike. Pic: ELVIS NTOMBELA. Circa July 2009. © Sowetan.
TRIUMPHANT: Construction workers are expected to resume work today following the signing of a 12 percent wage increase after a week-long strike. Pic: ELVIS NTOMBELA. Circa July 2009. © Sowetan.

WORK on 2010 World Cup projects is expected to resume this morning following an agreement signed between construction unions and employers.

WORK on 2010 World Cup projects is expected to resume this morning following an agreement signed between construction unions and employers.

The deal, signed yesterday, means that the workers will get a 12percent salary increase, one percent lower than what the unions were demanding.

This has brought to an end the week-long strike involving about 70000 construction workers, which was threatening to derail the deadlines for the projects.

According to the agreement, those who have been working for more than 18 months will now be offered permanent jobs.

They will also get benefits such as medical aid and provident fund.

The signing ceremony took place at the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration offices in Johannesburg.

It emerged before the signing that some clauses in the agreement needed to be re-negotiated. One of them had to do with not striking before the 2010 World Cup. The 12percent deal was signed late in the afternoon.

National Union of Mineworkers deputy president Thamsanqa Matosa said: "There is no such clause preventing us from striking any time during the agreement. We are happy with the 12 percent and we feel that we have achieved what we wanted."

NUM spokesperson Lesiba Seshoka said the parties would return to the negotiation table "to iron out grammatical issues in the agreement".

"The strike will be called off immediately and the workers will be expected to report for work on Thursday (today)."

Meanwhile, the South African Federation of Civil Contractors said construction would not be affected by the strike.

X