Pay pol­icy change must be ne­go­ti­ated

The Herald (South Africa) - - OPINION & ANALYSIS -

THE ANC in the Nel­son Man­dela Bay re­gion wants to dis­pel the no­tion ped­dled by mayor Athol Trol­lip on the rea­sons the NMB Mu­nic­i­pal­ity has scrapped the over­time pol­icy.

The Ba­sic Con­di­tions of Em­ploy­ment Act is un­equiv­o­cally clear: all em­ploy­ees who work af­ter nor­mal hours from Mon­day to Satur­day shall be re­mu­ner­ated at 1.5 times the nor­mal rate and at twice the nor­mal rate on Sun­days and pub­lic holidays.

The act fur­ther states that should there be an in­ten­tion to tweak this ba­sic tenet, such in­ten­tion may only be en­acted un­der spe­cific con­di­tions and must be sub­ject to for­mal ne­go­ti­a­tions between em­ployer and em­ployee.

On May 23, Trol­lip and his DA col­leagues pushed through a coun­cil res­o­lu­tion to with­draw em­ploy­ees’ over­time pay­ments.

When it was pointed out to Trol­lip that he could not uni­lat­er­ally make such an af­front to the act, he promised to ne­go­ti­ate with the em­ploy­ees.

How­ever, this was never done.

On Oc­to­ber 8 Trol­lip stated on so­cial me­dia that the over­time pol­icy was re­vised due to ad­verse find­ings by the au­di­tor-gen­eral. There is no ref­er­ence to over­time in the AG’s re­port (part of the 2015-16 an­nual re­port).

Why hasn’t Trol­lip told res­i­dents that over­time for water works, and elec­tric­ity and en­ergy em­ploy­ees falls into two cat­e­gories, namely pre­planned over­time and standby du­ties as per a monthly ros­ter?

Trol­lip is also disin­gen­u­ous with his vac­u­ous state­ments that ques­tion the loy­alty and com­mit­ment of coun­cil’s em­ploy­ees. NMBM em­ploy­ees have by and large dis­played re­mark­able com­mit­ment to our city and res­i­dents in ex­tremely try­ing times.

Trol­lip also knows that em­ploy­ees are pro­hib­ited from mak­ing com­ments on so­cial me­dia and, there­fore, his state­ments on so­cial me­dia plat­forms can­not be chal­lenged.

Themba Xathula, ANC re­gional sec­re­tary, Nel­son Man­dela Bay

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