Coke strikers seek Jordaan meeting

THE Food and Allied Workers Union wants to meet Local Organising Committee chief executive Danny Jordaan to discuss its campaign against Coca-Cola in the run-up to and during the 2010 Fifa Soccer World Cup.

THE Food and Allied Workers Union wants to meet Local Organising Committee chief executive Danny Jordaan to discuss its campaign against Coca-Cola in the run-up to and during the 2010 Fifa Soccer World Cup.

A letter has been sent to Jordaan asking for an opportunity to discuss the World Cup sponsorship of Coca-Cola, as well as the union's campaign to "smash the brand", Fawu general secretary Katishi Masemola said in a statement yesterday.

It also wanted to expose what it claimed were abusive practices of labour brokers and exploitation of crews on ABI delivery trucks bearing the Coca-Cola logo.

Masemola said Fawu would meet with Cosatu leaders in the next two weeks, before the Coca-Cola Workers Alliance meeting in Geneva, Switzerland, on February 4 and 5.

At the meeting the consumer boycott of ABI's Coca-Cola products and SABMiller's alcoholic beverages would be discussed.

Masemola said members of Fawu at ABI continued striking and would continue picketing and demonstrating daily next to ABI premises, particularly at four manufacturing plants - Midrand, Pretoria West, Devland next to Chris Hani Baragwanath hospital and Phoenix in Durban.

About 2500 ABI workers remain on strike after wage talks between the company and Fawu failed to yield an agreement.

The company has offered a 7,8percent pay rise while the union initially demanded a hike of 9,5percent.

During the latest round of talks under the auspices of the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration, the union said it was willing to drop its demand to 8,5 percent but the company would not agree to this.

ABI is the soft drinks division of SAB Miller and around 6500 beer workers are set to join the strike on January 27.

ABI has maintained that the month-long strike has had no effect on its business, with workers at 60percent of its sites back on the job.

Members of Fawu and Masemola yesterday also called on all members to refrain from violence and intimidation during the strike.

Fawu said it had been ordered to communicate this information in the media and through internal channels of communication. - Sapa

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