NUMSA on Mercedes-Benz strike interdict

NUMSA on Mercedes-Benz strike interdict

20 May 2013

The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) will uphold the court decision after Mercedes-Benz successfully interdicted our unprotected strike at its plant in East London, Eastern Cape province. Our members have been engaging on lunch hour pickets, which escalated into full-blown unprotected strike action last week Friday 17 May 2013, to force the employer to concede to workers’ genuine and legitimate demands.

“We fully support the demands of our members. We call on the management to re-open doors of engagement in order to settle the dispute. And we will never allow our members to be bullied for exercising their democratic right to embark on a picket. The strike action was imposed on them after serious provocation and threats by the employer to subject all workers into a Kangaroo style Disciplinary process for picketing”, says Numsa National Treasurer Comrade Mphumzi Maqungo

The union representatives unsuccessfully tried to solicit a settlement agreement with the malodorous and big-headed employer pertaining to pertinent and legitimate grievances as soberly expressed by our members. The engagements were in relation to the Transport Allowance and an end to outsourcing of work by the employer, as per standing agreements.

The union exhausted all possible avenues to engage with the Mercedes-Benz oligarchy with the sole intention of addressing these legitimate grievances of workers. Unfortunately, the Mercedes-Benz oligarchy closed all doors of engagement and decided to use the courts to suppress dissent and liquidate our demands. The union rejects this cheap tactic taken by Mercedes-Benz oligarchy and their failures to adhere to collective bargaining agreements. We view their poisonous behavior as an ideological onslaught against workers’ rights to collective bargaining and improved conditions of employment as promulgated in the Labour Relations Act of 1996.

The union’s leadership is currently in discussion with the workers in order to determine the next cause of action. We strongly believe that these legitimate demands can be resolved or addressed by Mercedes-Benz oligarchy, given the fact that these demands are a dominant and fundamental feature in our collective bargaining agreements.
We refuse to allow employer’s cheaply using the backdoor by wanting to steal workers hard won benefits during the bargaining negotiations.


Castro Ngobese
Numsa National Spokesperson – 081 011 1137