On The Shopfloor

Company provides 'hotel' for its scab labour!Striking workers at plastic pallet manufacturer, Chep, are outraged after their employer pitched a tent inside the company premises and brought in beds for the scab labour.

Bread and other food deliveries are also flowing for the 'magundwane'. The strike over wages and conditions of work started in late October, says Kempton Park local organiser, Peter Thobejane.

The company with branches in Rosslyn, Jet Park, Elandsfontein, Alrode, Nelspruit and Limpopo had rejected workers' demand for a 15% wage increase with a 40 hour week and severance pay of six weeks per year of service.

It is offering 7,5%.Meanwhile Numsa is busy preparing to counter the company's application for a court interdict. The company alleges that Numsa members are intimidating the scabs and not complying with picketing rules.

Cosatu briefs


Cosatu applauds Competition Commission ruling on bread price but considers class actionCosatu has welcomed the Competition Commission's finding that food companies did work together in deciding to raise the bread price last year and the fine it slapped on Tiger Brands of nearly R100m.

However, it has labelled the process 'flawed' because there is no compensation to the victims of the bread price increase and has threatened to institute a "class action suit" to "compensate the real victims".

It has also called on government to regulate the prices of basic foodstuffs more stringently. Currently food inflation measures over 9% while the price of maize has gone up by more than 50% so far this year.


10 000 workers down tools10 000 workers at JIC mining Services, a mining construction company contracted in major mining companies, downed tools.

“For some time workers were brutalized; fired and rehired under new contracts, now that has to stop. This is a good lesson to any company that treats its workers like dirt,” says Ecliff Tantsi, the NUM's National Secretary for Education.


Spate of mine accidents enrages NumA spate of mine accidents across different mines falling under Num has enraged Num.

But with the gold price climbing ever higher and the mines digging down ever deeper, safety in the mines is becoming more and more difficult to guarantee.

At Goldfields Kloof Mine 15 000 mineworkers refused to work the night shift and the morning shift to mourn the deaths of their two colleagues.

The company had forced them to have a memorial service the previous day while others were at work. The miners rejected the suggestion and downed tools.

In October more than 2000 underground workers survived for two days underground when a burst pipe blocked their only exit. Deprived of food, miners had to survive just on water.


Farmworkers die in transport accidentsJust more than a year after 19 farmworkers were killed when the truck in which they were travelling stalled at a level crossing and was crushed by a passing train, more farmworkers have died in two separate bus and truck accidents.

Fawu has called on government to pass regulations controlling the transport of vehicles carrying farmworkers.


Fawu calls for agricultural TRCFawu held nationwide protest actions on November 17 around the dire working and living conditions of farmworkers and farm dwellers.

Fawu is demanding- The setting up of an Agricultural Sector Truth and Reconciliation Commission in order to get to the bottom of abuse of murders of farm workers/dwellers- Expropriation of sections of farms to be used for building schools, clinics, and other important social services delivery points.

The setting up of a negotiating platform to discuss and reach binding agreements on addressing the plight of farm workers and dwellers- The halting and review of all evictions, legal or illegal, until an agreement is reached on the plight of farm workers/dwellers- The setting up of specialized courts and dedicated SAPS units to address cases referred to by farm workers and dwellers- The creation of RDP- type housing to ensure decent shelter- The establishment of a national food regulator for the purpose of food safety, food quality and food price regulation.


Num issues yellow card for 2010 stadia and GautrainNum has issued notices for secondary strikes to major construction employers involved in the building of 2010 projects.

This is after the two-week strike at Durban's Moses Mabhida stadium grinds on with management refusing to budge. Workers are demanding project bonuses, the appointment of a fulltime safety officer and improvements of wages for subcontractors.

We must share part of the 2010 pie. It cannot only be for the few holier than thou people” says Bonginkosi Mncwabe, the NUM‘s Regional Coordinator in Kwazulu-Natal.

"We strongly condemn the awarding of lucrative contracts to people with a slave mentality," Num said.

"The NUM is working around the clock to correct all the anomalies in mining, construction and energy sectors to ensure that our people are treated with dignity and respect they deserve."


Numsa News