NATIONAL NEWS - The South African National Civic Organisation (Sanco) on Sunday expressed the hope that a new wage offer made in the bargaining chamber would break the stalemate and end the countrywide bus strike.
The organisation urged parties to finalise consultations speedily to end the protracted national bus strike, Sanco spokesman Jabu Mahlangu said.
The bargaining council and the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation, and Arbitration (CCMA) had proposed an offer of 8.75% for the first year and 8.25% for the second. Workers had been on strike for nearly a month, demanding a 9% wage hike, he said.
Mahlangu said commuters could not afford any further postponement of the resolution of the strike. “It will take months before some of them recover from the effect of the strike which has eroded their meagre resources and left them high and dry.”
Although other public transport providers had benefited substantially from the strike, commuters suffered the most inconvenience, including arriving late at work and late returning home, safety risks, and job losses as well as affordability.
“Some [commuters] had to resort to loan sharks in order to carry the heavy burden of the expanded budgets that was unexpectedly thrust upon them by the protracted strike,” Mahlangu said.