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Bus strike continues after talks with labour minister fail

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The bus strike is to continue after the Department of Labour’s attempted intervention between employer organisations and unions representing striking bus drivers was fruitless.

Bus drivers across the country took their feet off the pedal last week, demanding better salaries.

The strike, which is now in its seventh day, has put severe pressure on taxi ranks, with long queues inconveniencing commuters.

Minister of Labour Mildred Oliphant convened a meeting between unions and employers on Tuesday in an effort to break the deadlock in the more than three-month wage talks.

Though talks lasted into the night, no settlement was reached.

Unions say they tried to lower their wage demand again to nine percent in the first year and 8.5-percent in the second year.

Employer organisations offered eight percent in the second year and nine percent for the first year, which would be paid from 1 May 2018 instead of 1 April 2018.

Unions say employers still refuse to accept labour’s other demands such as dual-driver payments, night-shift hours and insourcing of workers such as cleaners.

Unions are now calling on Minister of Transport Blade Nzimande to intervene.

[Source: EnCA]
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