Re­in­state us or else, warn ousted Unisa work­ers

Pretoria News - - Metro - SAKHILE ND­LAZI sakhile.nd­lazi@inl.co.za

MORE than 130 dis­grun­tled Unisa work­ers have vowed to in­ten­sify their protests should talks sched­uled with the uni­ver­sity go sour to­day.

Yes­ter­day, and for the past few days, livid protesters oc­cu­pied the en­trance of the OR Tambo build­ing de­mand­ing to be re­in­stated.

Most of the protesters worked as ad­min­is­tra­tors at the direc­torate stu­dent as­sess­ment ad­min­is­tra­tion and dealt mostly with the han­dling of as­sign­ments and ex­ams.

Ousted ad­min­is­tra­tor Peter Ra­male­bana said they were served with no­tices on Septem­ber 28 with no valid ex­pla­na­tion. “We went to oc­cupy the hu­man re­sources of­fices seek­ing for valid an­swers un­til the reg­is­trar de­manded a mem­o­ran­dum of de­mands from us and said they would re­ply af­ter 48 hours, which they failed to do,” he said.

Protesters al­leged that labour bro­kers brought in new peo­ple af­ter the other em­ploy­ees who worked at the in­sti­tu­tion for 13 months were laid off.

“If they don’t want to re­in­state and in-source us, they will feel the heat. We will make Unisa un­govern­able. We can­not be treated so in­hu­manely and let peo­ple get away with it,” he said.

They chanted and held up plac­ards read­ing, “Jobs for sex”, and “To hell with sex­ual favours”.

The work­ers also ac­cused Na­tional Ed­u­ca­tion Health and Al­lied Work­ers Union (Ne­hawu) of col­lud­ing with the uni­ver­sity in oust­ing them.

“They promised to rep­re­sent us, but af­ter one meet­ing with the man­age­ment they turned their backs on us and are not keep­ing con­tact,” said Ra­male­bana.

SRC pres­i­dent Wadzanai Mazhetese said the uni­ver­sity didn’t care about the well-be­ing of work­ers and it showed in the way it dis­missed them.

Mpho Morolane, EFF Stu­dent Com­mand leader, who was rep­re­sent­ing the protesters, said they were not turn­ing back. He said they did not want Unisa labour bro­kers bring­ing in their work­ers.

“Those who were un­fairly dis­missed must be the ones re­port­ing back to work.

“The law is clear; af­ter three months em­ploy­ees are deemed to be per­ma­nent,” he said.

Unisa spokesper­son Martin Ramot­shela said em­ploy­ees who were protest­ing be­longed to agen­cies who were ren­der­ing ser­vices at the uni­ver­sity.

He said their ser­vice agree­ments came to an end at the end of Septem­ber.

The uni­ver­sity was ad­dress­ing both the protest ac­tion as well as the de­mands made on the uni­ver­sity by the protesters. “The uni­ver­sity chooses not to ad­dress these mat­ters through the me­dia,” he said.

SAKHILE ND­LAZI

OUSTED Unisa work­ers protest out­side the OR Tambo Build­ing de­mand­ing to be re­in­stated. |

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