A bitter row has emerged over R28 million pension and medical aid contribution arrears owed by nearly 3,200 companies to industry funds.
The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) has taken up cudgels over the non-payment of provident fund and medical aid contributions forcing the Metal Industry Benefits Fund Association (Mibfa) and Metal Engineering Industry Bargaining Councils ( Meibc) to agree for the matter to be referred for urgent arbitration.
Almost 1 500 employers in the motor industry owe about R23 million in employees pension and medical aid contributions. Engineering companies estimated to 1 700, meanwhile are failing to pay back a total sum of R5 million owed towards workers’ provident fund contributions.
Judgments awards against defaulting companies have been granted and Numsa trustees in the engineering bargaining council have pushed for government to intervene if arbitration fails to resolve the matter speedily, Numsa national benefits coordinator Sam Tsiane said.
Tsiane also expressed his disappointment that authorities and the legal processes had taken too long to address the issue which had prompted the union to coordinate mobilization drive in preparation for major protests, including planned demonstrations on motor and engineering bargaining councils.
Numsa is also concern that some companies had closed down in the aftermath of global economic slump down owing workers pension contributions which in turn had serious implications for some of the retrenched workers.
The union is also geared to intensify calls for the labour ministry to come forward and intervene before the situation get worse without any prospect of improvement.
For further information contact:
Mziwakhe Hlangani, Numsa national spokesperson
Cell phone: 082 9407116
E-mail : firstname.lastname@example.org