In The News South Africa

Strike looms at Road Accident Fund, Numsa granted certificate

JOHANNESBURG, October 10 – A strike looms at the cash-strapped Road Accident Fund (RAF), where workers have lodged several complaints including malfunctioning air conditioning units, poor sanitation and assets such as computers being attached to pay creditors.
The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) on Tuesday said it had secured “a strike certificate” against the RAF.
“We lodged a grievance with the CCMA [Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration] because workers at the Johannesburg RAF offices were exposed to harmful working condition,” said Phakamile Hlubi, the acting national spokesperson for Numsa.
Hlubi said a fire in September in Johannesburg’s central business district resulted in extended power cuts, which meant the air conditioning units were not working at the RAF building.
“Eight workers fainted from the heat, caused by working in a window less environment. The building has poor sanitation exposing workers to potentially dangerous illnesses and infections,” complained Hlubi, adding that Numsa lodged a grievance with the CCMA because “we felt that the management at RAF in Johannesburg failed to adequately address our concerns regarding the safety of employees at RAF”.
Hlubi said Management “did not care that workers were suffering and did nothing to ensure that working conditions are safer”.
Numsa is demanding the suspension of the RAF employee relations manager and general manager “for the manner in which they handled this issue”.
Hlubi said: “The CCMA has granted us the right to strike over this issue, however, we want to avoid a strike and settle the dispute amicably.”
Earlier this year in March, workers who are members of Numsa went of strike over the RAF’s dire financial situation that resulted in its assets being attached.
The RAF could not be immediately reached for comment.
– African News Agency (ANA)

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