Today's Labour News

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strike thumb medium85 85The New Age reports that members of the National Union of Metalworkers of SA (Numsa) have downed tools at Abengoa South Africa in the Northern Cape, claiming that workers at the renewable energy plants do not get any benefits.  

Numsa general secretary Irvin Jim said on Sunday:  “They are denied medical aid, a housing allowance, a provident fund and other benefits.  Their wages are spent on covering all these expenses.  This is why the entire workforce is on strike, to demand higher wages and benefits.”  He added:  “The energy minister claimed that these firms would bring ‘entrepreneurial opportunities’ in our rural communities.  Our members can confirm that this is hogwash.  There is very little development and certainly no opportunities for entrepreneurship in the surrounding area of the firm.”  Numsa said it was not opposing renewable energy, but was calling for a just transition to renewable energy.  The union claims that Eskom’s IPP procurement programme would result in job losses.  “Eskom has confirmed that when the IPP contracts are signed, five Eskom power plants in Mpumalanga would be put on ‘cold reserve’.  This is a kind way of saying there will be job losses.  They will cut hours which will drastically reduce pay, and eventually they will retrench those workers,” the union said.

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