S. Africa's metal workers end their strike

Over 200,000 NUMSA-affiliated metalworkers declared a nationwide strike on July 1 to demand a 15-percent pay raise for laborers and a ban on labor brokers

S. Africa's metal workers end their strike

South Africa’s largest metalworkers’ Union on Monday announced the end of its strike, which lasted for a whole month, after receiving an offer from employers.

“The offer has been unanimously accepted by our members,” Irvin Jim, the secretary-general of the National Union of Metal Workers of South Africa (NUMSA) said late on Monday.

He called on members to return to work, starting from Tuesday.

Over 200,000 NUMSA-affiliated metalworkers declared a nationwide strike on July 1 to demand a 15-percent pay raise for laborers and a ban on labor brokers.

The Union has now, however, accepted a 10 percent annual pay raise in the next three years for its lowest-paid workers.

“We are immensely relieved that the strike is finally over," Kaizer Nyatsumba, the chief executive officer of the Steel and Engineering Industries Federation of Southern Africa, said.

"It is now incumbent on all stakeholders in the metals and engineering sector to work cooperatively together to grow the sector and to ensure that it is internationally competitive," Nyatsumba added in a statement.

Nyatsumba expressed appreciation for Labor Minister, Mildred Oliphant, and her team for the major role they played in brokering the agreement.

“We are grateful to Minister Oliphant for the leadership that she showed in this matter. It is no exaggeration to say that, had she and her team not been involved in the process, the strike may well be continuing,” Nyatsumba said.

The one-month-long strike affected a number of industries, including the automotive industry. Cases of intimidation and destruction of property by strikers were widely reported.

The NUMSA strike began barely one week after South Africa’s Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union ended a five-month strike that cost local platinum companies some 23.9 billion rand (roughly $2.2 billion) worth of revenues.

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Güncelleme Tarihi: 28 Temmuz 2014, 23:57

Muhammed Öylek

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