Today's Labour News

newsThis news aggregator site highlights South African labour news from a wide range of internet and print sources. Each posting has a synopsis of the source article, together with a link or reference to the original. Postings cover the range of labour related matters from industrial relations to generalist human resources.

eskomBL Premium reports that Eskom has dragged the National Energy Regulator of SA (Nersa) to court over the regulator’s tariff decision and is toughing it out against employees with a wage freeze, despite the growing prospect of a strike.  

At present, it costs the company more to produce electricity than the regulator allows it to recoup from tariffs, while the state-owned power utility is also sitting with a huge debt burden.  On Thursday, Eskom filed court papers to request a review of the 5% price increase Nersa granted it earlier in 2018.  Eskom’s new management, headed by CEO Phakamani Hadebe, must cut costs, increase revenue and restructure debt.  But steps to do so — such as its wage freeze — have angered trade unions.  They are set to embark on an illegal strike, with a meeting between unions to iron out details scheduled for Monday.  Eskom workers are classified as essential services and cannot legally strike.  A third round of wage talks ended late on Thursday in deadlock, with the National Union of Metalworkers SA and the National Union of Mineworkers walking out, vowing a "total shutdown".  The majority union at Eskom, the NUM, said the power utility was using the essential services provision as an excuse.  Numsa said Eskom had treated labour in a "hostile way".  Solidarity’s Deon Reyneke said the union would not encourage its members to go on strike as this would be illegal.  Solidarity would, however, participate in the meeting on Monday with the other unions at Eskom.

  • Read this report by Natasha Marrian & Sikonathi Mantshantsha in full at BL Premium (paywall access)
  • Read too, Numsa walks out of wage negotiations with Eskom, at Business Report

Get other news reports at the SA Labour News home page