Numsa says talks have collapsed
THE NATIONAL Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) said yesterday that wage negotiations with employers in the engineering sector have deadlocked after the union rejected the 5.3 percent wage increase earlier this month.
Numsa has been meeting employers under the auspices of the bargaining chamber, the Metal and Engineering Industries Bargaining Council, to negotiate a new wage agreement. The talks come as the current wage agreement lapses at the end of June.
The union tabled a demand for a 15 percent wage increase across the board on the actual rate that workers are earning, not on the minimum rate, and an extension of the current agreement for two years.
Numsa’s acting spokesperson, Phakamile Hlubi, said talks have deadlocked because they are trying to impose backward wage proposals which will see new workers in the sector earning only half of the current minimum rate. He accused the engineering sector of being racist, saying that the current minimum wage is at R40 per hour but the sector wishes to slash entry level salaries by 50 percent.