COSATU has announced a one-day National Strike on Friday, 7 October 2016.
The strike will constitute a protected protest action, as COSATU has complied with Section 77 of the Labour Relations Act, as confirmed by NEDLAC.
Section 77, as mentioned above, provides for “protest action to promote or defend socio-economic interests of workers” and covers a much larger scope of demands than those of mutual interest between employee and employer, for example, COSATU will be protesting for and demanding the following:
- The total banning of labour brokers;
- The scrapping of the e-tolling system including the expensive toll gates;
- They wish to fight in defence of our Jobs and against retrenchments;
- The implementation of the Legislated National Minimum Wage;
- A fight to defend and protect our Collective Bargaining Agreements;
- A fight for compliance with Occupational Health and Safety Standards in all workplaces;
- A fight for the implementation of the NHI;
- A fight for the scrapping of the Taxation Amendment Law;
- The implementation of free education
Any employee engaged in an essential service may not participate in the protest action. Employees in a maintenance service may participate if permitted by the agreement regulating the maintenance service.It is also not clear how widespread the protest action will be. Some of the COSATU regions have already indicated that they will support the project.
It is not yet clear whether any of the non-COSATU unions will take part in the protest action organised by COSATU.
Any employee is entitled to participate in the protected protest action and may not be disciplined for being absent from work. Participating employees enjoy the same protection as in the case of a protected strike. However, the principle of no-work-no-pay will apply.