Press Statement dated 8 August 2018

The United National Transport Union (UNTU) calls on the Transport Minister Dr Blade Nzimande to instruct Gauteng Transport MEC Ismail Vadi to objectively intervene in the #GautrainStike.

Chaos erupted this morning on the route to the Gautrain Midrand Depot after rocks and burning tyres where placed on the road in contravention of the interdict the Bombela Operating Company (BOC) obtained against striking UNTU members last week.

“UNTU does not take any responsibility for this illegal act. We were not aware of this until the Union and our strike marshals arrived at the Depot this morning. It must have been done by frustrated individuals who took the law in their own hands,” says Steve Harris, General Secretary of UNTU.

According to Harris BOC infuriated members after responding to their lowered list of demands tabled yesterday in the media and not responding to the Union.

“The Minister and the MEC should explain to the French owned BOC that South African workers deserves to be respected and not disregarding as they have been doing so far,” says Harris.

The GautrainStrike entered its tenth day today. Yesterday UNTU members, 90% (350 employees working for the Gautrain) lowered their list of demands to break the deadlock in wage negotiations.

This comes after BOC still refuse to disclose its financial statements even after two senior Commissioners of the Commission for Conciliation, Arbitration and Mediation (CCMA), got involved.

Harris says to date UNTU had to negotiate blind as the Employer refuses to adhere to its obligation in terms of the Labour Relations Act (LRA).

“The arrogance and attitude of the French derailed this negotiation and is fuelling this strike,” says Harris.

UNTU’s revised demands is:

  • 9% salary increase across the board;
  • R8 500 entry level for Conductors;
  • 9% increase in the travel allowance;
  • 9% increase in the Night Shift Allowance;
  • Medical Aid contribution: 55% Employer/45% Employee;
  • Travel Allowance for Staff at Midrand Depot: R400
  • R15 000 Incentive Bonus

Issued on behalf of United National Transport Union (UNTU) by Sonja Carstens, Media and Liaison Officer