news shutterstockIn our Friday roundup, see summaries
of our selection of South African labour-
related stories that have appeared since
midday on Thursday, 13 October 2016.


OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH & SAFETY

Worker killed during demolition of building in Durban CBD

ANA reports that a man, believed to be in his 40s, was killed Thursday morning after part of a building collapsed on him on Audley Road in Durban’s CBD.  Paramedics found a number of workers on the scene and were informed that the men had been demolishing the building when part of it collapse, burying one of the workers.  His body was freed from beneath a large pile of rubble, but unfortunately he had already succumbed to his multiple, fatal injuries.

A short report is at IOL News

Security guard killed at high school near Tzaneen

The Citizen reports that a 62-year-old security guard has been killed and R30,000 worth of groceries stolen at Modubatse High School in Limpopo.  According to the Letaba Herald, the body of Willy Ngobeni was discovered on the school veranda by the school principal at Ga-Kgapane.  There were bunches of keys scattered on the floor around the body.  The school had just received feeding scheme delivery on Friday.

Read this report by Refiloe Matome in full at The Citizen

Almost twice as dangerous to be a farmer than a police officer: ISS

Engineering News reports that in order to bolster Agri SA’s efforts to protect farmers and prevent farm attacks, Santam has donated R250,000 to Agri SA’s Securitas Trust Fund.  The fund supports farming communities financially to combat crime, while raising awareness in communities.  Speaking at the Agri SA Congress on Thursday, Institute for Security Studies (ISS) senior researcher Dr Johan Burger said the safety of farmers in SA was a constant competition for resources, adding that the farming community was disproportionally targeted for attacks.  Of the 18,000 murders committed in 2015/16, 49 were farmers, while 79 were police members.  However, 52 of every 100,000 citizens was a farmer, while 97 of every 100 000 citizens was a police officer.

Read this report in full at Engineering News


MINING LABOUR

Rock drillers stage underground sit-in at Gold One’s Modder East mine

TMG Digital/Sowetan reported on Thursday that at least 66 rock drill operators (RDOs) were staging a sit-in underground at Gold One’s Modder East Operations in Springs‚ Ekurhuleni.  The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) confirmed that the union members had been staging the sit-in since Tuesday. The  NUM’s Livhuwani Mammburu said:  “The rock drill operators are demanding [a] R250 bonus per blast.  The RDO’s said that they will not come out of underground until their demands are met.  “They are also demanding that the management must not take disciplinary actions against them when they come out underground.”  He also called on the Minister of Mineral Resources to intervene in the interests of health and safety.

Read this report in full at TimesLive.  A short report is also at Mining Weekly.  The NUM’s press statement in this regard is at Polity

Tensions between NUM and Sibanye at Cooke operations rise

The New Age writes that tensions between organised labour and Sibanye Gold management are on a knife edge at the gold producer’s Cooke operations in Westonaria.  National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) deputy president Joseph Montisetse accused the company of providing “lax security” during an illegal gathering that led to the death of NUM member Ranthimo Nkosi and said the union would be taking legal action against Sibanye.  NUM claims the dead man was killed by Amcu members.  The union held a mass meeting on Wednesday to chart a way forward after various attacks on its members across the Cooke operations.  Sibanye spokesperson James Wellsted confirmed that there has been an illegal gathering at the Cooke 2 mine by “Amcu supporters”, but he rejected the NUM’s allegations that the company was complicit in the violent acts.  He said that the company was investigating and would take appropriate action to bring those responsible to book.

This report by Bonolo Selebano is on page 4 of The New Age of 14 October 2016.  An extended summary of the report is at SA Labour News

Free State cops search for relatives of dead zama zama

ANA reports that Free State police are urging relatives of an illegal miner (zama zama), found dead at the Eland mine shaft in Welkom, to come forward and claim the body.  In a statement on Wednesday, Welkom police spokesperson Captain Stephen Thakeng said the man was found at level 47 of the mine on 10 September.  He is believed to be between 25 and 30 years old, about 1.72m in height, and had dreadlocks.  He also had a scar above his right eye.  The investigations revealed that he died of natural causes.

A short report is at IOL News

Other labour posting(s) in this news category

  • Chamber of Mines invites Wits #FeesMustFall leaders to a meeting, at The Citizen


PROTESTS, MARCHES AND BOYCOTTS

Nehawu protests against Northern Cape health department ‘disruptive’

The New Age reports that ongoing protests by the National Education Health and Allied Workers' Union (Nehawu) are beginning to disrupt the services of the Northern Cape health department.  This is according to the provincial MEC Lebogang Motlhaping.  Nehawu members have in the past four weeks been demonstrating to demand answers to grievances pertaining to what they call unlawful appointments in departments.  The union has also complained of delays in the release of a corruption task team report and has demanded the absorption of community health workers into the workforce and the axing of the departmental head.  Meantime, the department has obtained an interim court interdict prohibiting any disruption of any services at Kimberley Hospital and Prof ZK Matthews Hospital.  Motlhaping said:  “While attempts to try to address the demands of Nehawu are being explored, we fell it should not come as a compromise in rendering healthcare services.”

Read this report by Nomusa Mvubu in full on page 10 of The New Age of 14 October 2016.  Read too, Rook trek wyl dokters breinoperasie uitvoer by Kimberley-hospitaal, at Netwerk24 (limited access)


CORPORATE TRANSFORMATION

Labour Deputy Minister: Too many whites rule at work

Cape Times reports that Deputy Labour Minister Phathekile Holomisa told Cape Town business and government officials during a dialogue on equity transformation on Thursday that transformation at the workplace was happening at a painfully slow pace.  This was particularly so in the private sector, where top positions were still dominated by white people, particularly white males.  The dialogue was the first in a series to understand the dynamics of the implementation of the Employment Equity Act.  Labour spokesperson Sithembele Tshwete said countrywide there was an under-representation of women in executive, management and technical positions.  He added that there was a persistent gender pay gap.

Read this report by Sandiso Phaliso in full at Cape Times


LABOUR MARKET / JOBS

Solidarity concerned about weak employment growth in private sector

Business Report writes that trade union Solidarity has expressed growing concern over weak employment growth in South Africa’s private sector.  Commenting on the recent releases of various labour market statistics by Stats SA, Solidarity said it was now more evident than ever that pro-market reforms were urgently needed to reverse a growing decline in employment conditions.  The union said, since 2008, most employment opportunities were created in the public sector, and placed pressure on the National Treasury’s purse strings.  As a solution, it has called for the removal of “regulatory and policy hurdles”.

Read this report by Zintle Mahlati in full at Business Report.  See too, Al minder werk in die private sektor, maan Solidariteit, at Netwerk24 (limited access)

Nursing union Denosa welcomes sugar tax and dismisses warning of job losses

The New Age reports that the Democratic Nursing Organisation of SA (Denosa) has become the latest organisation to throw its weight behind the proposed sugar tax.  This comes after the World Health Organisation on Monday called on countries to impose sugar taxes, saying they would lower the consumption of sugary drinks and curb non-communicable diseases such as obesity.  Denosa hailed the government’s move to introduce a sugar tax, set to come in effect next year, as proof that SA was on the right path in fighting diseases.  Yet, the Beverage Association of SA has warned that 60,000 jobs will be lost if the sugar tax is implemented.  But Denosa slammed the industry, saying it was only concerned with its profit margins rather than the health of the country.

Read this report by The New Age in full at HT Syndication.  Read Denosa’s press statement at Denosa online.  Read too, Nursing group hails sugar tax, at Business Report


RECRUITMENT / STAFFING

Up to 500 applicants for every job advertised by Nelson Mandela Bay

HeraldLive reports that every job advertised by the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality attracts up to 500 applications, forcing the municipality to rethink its recruitment strategy.  There are currently only nine staff members who process applications and, if 1,000 jobs were to be advertised, there could be up to 500,000 applications.  The metro has registered as an employer with the Department of Labour, hoping to use its database to fill some of the critical vacancies in the municipality which are less senior.  It is also looking at job and applications computer terminals.

Read this report by Rochelle de Kock in full at HeraldLive


WORKPLACE CONDITIONS

200 Gauteng traffic cops idle at home on full pay due to patrol car shortage

TMG Digital reports that two hundred officers from the Gauteng traffic police unit are unable to work due to a vehicle shortage caused by budget cuts that is preventing them from getting on the road.  According to a Mail & Guardian report, this is equal to one-third of the 600-strong unit.  "Since April we've been sitting at home but I still get full pay - I'm getting about R20‚000 a month for nothing,” the M&G quoted a supervisor as saying.  A lower ranking official said some people have been staying at home for up to four months‚ only coming in for a few days.  Officers are also complaining about a cut in their travel and subsistence allowances as well as overtime limits.

A short report is at TimesLive


OTHER REPORTS AND ISSUES

Microsoft SA named ‘Top Employer’

Business Report writes that the Top Employers Institute has awarded Microsoft SA its Top Employer South Africa 2017 certification.  In a statement released on Friday, Microsoft SA says this was in recognition of the company’s “excellent employee conditions, development and nurturing of talent throughout all levels of the organisation, as well as its forward-thinking employment practices”.  The award was made at an exclusive ceremony held in Johannesburg on Thursday.  The Institute also recognised Microsoft as the number one employer in South Africa, regardless of sector or organisational size.

Read this report in full at Business Report


WEB LINKS TO LABOUR NEWS ARTICLES ON THURSDAY, 13 OCTOBER 2016

See our listing of links to labour articles published on the internet on Thursday, 13 October 2016 at SA Labour News

 

Get South African labour news reports at SA Labour News