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Saturday , September , 25 2021
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NUM will fight ambush tactics employed by the Construction and Engineering Sector

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NUM will fight ambush tactics employed by the Construction and Engineering Sector

Press Statement, 2 September 2021

NUM will fight ambush tactics employed by the Construction and Engineering Sector

The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) strongly condemns ambush tactics employed by the Construction and Engineering Sector concerning this year wages and conditions of employment negotiations.

The NUM, the South African Forum of Civil Engineering Contractors, the Consolidated Employers Organisation and the Building Construction and Allied Workers Union have since March engaged in comprehensive industry negotiations regarding this year wage demands.

The parties are negotiating under the Bargaining Council for Civil Engineering Industry (BCCEI),

The parties in the BCCEI could not conclude drafting of what is been agreed upon in writing due to one item being excluded, which is the annual bonuses.

"We are stuck on the matter of bonuses, on what clauses should be inserted and which one should be deleted. The employers are using ambush tactics, the condition that would be favouring them at the expense of poor construction workers”, said NUM Construction Sector Coordinator Tebatso Mokoena.

The clauses that employers demanded to be deleted were that an employee shall forfeit their annual bonus when absent without permission, after 10 days of absence. The employers then demanded that we should reduce those days to zero.

As labour, we agreed to that proposal because the employers agreed to the fact that employees will receive a pro-rata bonus when they exit employment before payment of this bonus which happens every December.

“Through their ambush tactics and their greedy behaviour, the employers have suddenly jackknifed, telling us this is not what they have agreed on. They then informed the negotiating forum that if we do not agree with their submission, we do not have an agreement to all conditions that have already been put in place. This is ridiculous as the industry is negotiating in bad faith with a gun on our heads. As the NUM negotiators we are refusing to sign such kind of an agreement”, said Mokoena.

What it means is that there is no agreement with the industry at this stage and all the increases that employees were expecting from the 1st of September this year would not receive them. The promulgation of the agreement will not take place.

One of the demands from the employers while busy negotiating was to freeze the wages for September 2021 to August 2022. The aim was to frustrate employees who are employed on a limited-duration contract not to receive their bonuses as they are entitled to gratuity at the end of their contract as long as that service is terminated before December.

To this end, the battle lines have been drawn. These construction companies had officially declared war on the working class. The NUM is committing itself to fight tooth and nail to ensure those poor workers are equally paid what is due to them.

For more detailed information, please contact:

Tebatso Mokoena, NUM Construction Sector Coordinator,  076 910 1302

The National Union of Mineworkers
7 Rissik Street.
Cnr Frederick Johannesburg
Tel: 011 377 2111 Cell: 083 809 3257
Twitter: @Num_Media

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/NUM/100860023402167

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