The Federation of Unions of South Africa (FEDUSA) is disappointed that the Minister of Labour has scheduled a meeting to meet with NUMSA, but did not invite the other trade unions (UASA, SAEWA, MEWUSA and CEPPWAWU) on the Metal and Engineering Industries Bargaining Council (MEIBC). It is a sad day for collective bargaining in South Africa, if government follow a piece-meal approach said UASA Chief Negotiator Leon Grobler.
Workers in the MEIBC are demanding a salary increase of 12% across the board, and employers are offering a 7% increase while demanding that the entry level wage should be reduced by 50%. It is unfortunate that government has not learnt lessons from the platinum belt dispute, where government also tried unconventional methods to resolve the wage dispute. It is important to involve all parties to the dispute in any interventions, as it may create mistrust if government intervenes on a piece-meal approach.
FEDUSA calls on government to rather follow the procedure stipulated in the Labour Relations Act, and with the institutions established, to deal with wage disputes. It is important for government to engage all trade unions that are represented on the MEIBC, concluded Grobler.
– ENDS – [194 words excluding headings]
FEDUSA is the largest politically non-aligned trade union federation in South Africa and represents a diverse membership from a variety of sectors in industry. See www.fedusa.org.za for more information.