Nationwide Shut Down Thursday 6 July 2023

Newsflash! Nationwide shut down Thursday 6 July 2023

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Cosatu, which boasts roughly 2 million members across the country, said it will be protesting socio-economic factors negatively affecting everyday workers.

The aim of the protest is to put pressure on government to do more and among other factors, end the current levels of load-shedding, cable theft, crime and corruption, wasteful expenditure, and austerity cuts crippling the state, suffocating the economy, and further plunging workers into high levels of indebtedness and misery. The working class can no longer afford to bear the burden of rising levels of inflation, electricity tariff hikes, and relentless and reckless increases in the repo rate.

Cosatu believes that certain steps can be taken to alleviate pressure on employees and uplift the economy:

  • Raise the SRD Grant to the food poverty line in the October MTBPS.
  • Extend the Presidential Employment Stimulus to accommodate 1 million active participants in October 2023 and 2 million in February 2024.
  • Ensure the implementation of the two pot pension reforms on 1 March 2024.
  • Unblock the delays in the rollout of the public infrastructure programme.
  • Intervene in the 36 municipalities routinely failing to pay their employees.
  • Repeal the Municipal Systems Amendment Act clause banning all 350 000 municipal workers from holding office in a political party at any level.
  • Urgently intervene to rebuild and modernise Transnet and Metro Rail.
  • Urgently intervene to prevent the collapse and liquidation of the Post Office.
  • Allocate additional resources to ensure the SAPS, NPA, SIU, Hawks and judiciary are sufficiently resourced to win the war against crime and corruption.
  • Allocate further funds to SARS to tackle tax evasion and customs fraud.
  • Fill out all funded public service and sector vacancies by December 2023.

The protest is protected under section 77 of the Labour Relations Act and is expected to affect major urban centers and cities in all nine provinces. The National Economic Development and Labour Council (Nedlac) has granted the union a certificate to strike.

What is Section 77? | Nedlac 

 

  • The intention of Section 77 of the LRA is to get parties to talk in the hope that disputes of a socio-economic nature can be resolved through social partner engagement.
  • To this end, parties are discouraged from using Section 77 and Nedlac as a rubber stamp to get permission to strike.
  • Once the engagements have deadlocked the Standing Committee makes a ruling that further engagements will serve no benefit to the parties.
  • The Standing Committee will, based on this decision, issue a Sec 77 (1)(c) notice to the applicants.
  • Should the applicants decide to engage in protest action they must give a 14-day notice period in the form of a Section 77 (1)(d) notice which advises Nedlac of the date of the protest.
  • This protest is then considered protected, and no employer may institute disciplinary action against any worker who chooses to join the action.

 

The rule of no-work-no-pay applies for workers who are taking the day off to join the protest action.

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