15 April 2020
The Federation of Unions of South Africa (FEDUSA), its affiliated and partner unions organised within the Public Service Co-ordinating Bargaining Council (PSCBC) have slammed Government and responded with fury for failing to honour the latter part of the 3 – year wage agreement concluded on 08 June 2018.
FEDUSA’s collective force in the public service represented by the Health and Other Services Personnel Trade Union of SA (HOSPERSA), National Professional Teachers’ Organisation of South Africa (NAPTOSA), Public Servants Association (PSA), Suid-Afrikaanse Onderwysersunie (SAOU), South African Parastatal And Tertiary Institutions Union (SAPTU) and United National Public Service Association of S.A. and Allied Workers Union (UNIPSAWU), after briefing its legal teams, have now proceeded to lodge an application with the Labour Court to force Government to implement the terms of the latter part of the 3 – year agreement. FEDUSA’s court action comes after the Government’s Persal System today, 15 April 2020, the cut – off date public servants pay – reflected no annual adjustments. The 2018 agreement saw government agree to pay lower-level employees salary increases of a projected consumer price index (CPI) plus 1%. Higher-level employees would receive CPI plus 0.5%, and the highest – level employees receiving only CPI.
“We are infuriated that Government has proceeded with a 0% adjustment to the salaries of civil servants. Government’s deliberate underhandedness has clearly been exposed after publicly welcoming the agreement at the time, signifying both commitment to and the resource allocation for honouring the multi – term agreement,” said FEDUSA General Secretary Riefdah Ajam.
To add insult to injury, statements by Public Service and Administration Minister Senzo Mchunu, just last week, indicated that “although the coronavirus health crisis was piling more pressure on an economy already in recession, the government remained committed to paying increases”. These conflicting and contradictory stances by Government are totally unacceptable and only create a false sense of hope in the hearts of committed and loyal public servants, who remain the unsung heroes of our country during this challenging time of fighting COVID 19.
The irony of the situation now lies in the ultimate reality that the competent and capable human capital within the public service remains the essential elements to sustain, manage and control the fight against COVID 19. “FEDUSA refuses to allow Government to use the COVID-19 pandemic as a convenient scapegoat of dishonouring a legally binding agreement, and we will use all resources to defend, uphold and protect the dignity of its members”
For interviews please contact:
Ms Riefdah Ajam
FEDUSA General Secretary
079 696 2625
FEDUSA Media and Research Officer
072 637 8096