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'We accept 7% increase but consider adding R15,000 one-off sweetener' — NUM members

Eskom and representatives of workers to meet at 2pm for feedback on latest salary increase offer

Isaac Mahlangu Senior reporter
Eskom workers protest over salary increases outside the Lethabo power station in the Free State last week.
Eskom workers protest over salary increases outside the Lethabo power station in the Free State last week.
Image: Ziphozonke Lushaba

Eskom employees have overwhelmingly accepted Eskom's 7% wage increase offer but many regions are proposing an additional one-off R15,000 sweetener.

This emerged at a Monday feedback meeting of the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM), ahead of a shop steward council with the National Union of Metalworkers of SA (Numsa) who are currently meeting and consolidating their position on a salary increase offer by Eskom.

Different regions are presenting their feedback in Sandton ahead of the convening of the central bargaining forum at 2pm.

All NUM regions that made presentations in the morning accepted the 7% salary increase offer that the power utility made on Friday, however some proposed amendments.

A representative from the Highveld region in Mpumalanga told the meeting their members were proposing a two-year deal to avoid “fighting with Eskom” every year.

He said they also proposed that Eskom pay them a R15,000 one-off fee, which was supported by other regions that presented their feedback.

Eskom employees also want the no-work no-pay principle not to be applied. Workers embarked on an unprotected strike two weeks ago.

“We must teach Eskom a lesson so that in future they don't have to change the conditions of employment unilaterally,” a member told the shop stewards council.

A representative from the Western Cape who also addressed the gathering said they were happy that the conditions of service will be reinstated. “We would like Eskom to insert a line [in the agreement] which says Eskom will not change the conditions of service in future without consulting,” she said.

Eskom had amended the conditions of service last year, taking away some of the benefits. With its back seemingly against the wall, the power utility last week agreed to unions' demands on the reinstatement of some conditions of employment in addition to the 7% salary increase offer it tabled and a R400 top-up to the housing allowance.

The two unions, NUM and Numsa, will meet ahead of the central bargaining forum session to consolidate their positions and speak with one voice when meeting Eskom's representatives.


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