Tshwane agrees to pay salary increases while it seeks culprits of damaged buildings

Members of Samwu can be seen protesting outside Tshwane House in the Pretoria CBD on 22 July 2020. Picture: Jacques Nelles

The City urged Samwu to agree to the 6.25% increase offer.

The City of Tshwane has announced that it has agreed to pay municipal workers a promised 6.25% salary increase following protests in the city this week.

“In the spirit of sound labour relations … the City has decided to honour the wage and salary increase collective agreement,” the City said on Thursday.

The protests began earlier this week when the workers broke into Tshwane House in Madiba Street and damaged the municipality’s head office. The police were deployed to deal with the ongoing protests as rubber bullets were fired.

In a statement, the City said revenue collection in the city had gone down to about 70% due to lockdown, which resulted in a R2.3-billion loss in liquidity.

It further said that although it was experiencing a poor liquidity status, it would implement the salary and wage agreement.

ALSO READ: Tshwane condemns Samwu workers’ ‘appalling behaviour’ during protest

Salary and wage agreement:

  • An increase of 6.25% on the basic Patterson notch will be paid on Wednesday 29 July 2020;
  • An increase of 6.25% on the basic Task notch of July 2020 will be paid in August 2020 retrospectively as from 1 July 2020;
  • A minimum wage of R8,329.27 as from 1 July 2020;
  • A medical aid subsidy of R4,773.12 as from 1 July 2020; and
  • A housing subsidy of R964.51 as from 1 July 2020.

“Please note that employees will receive their normal salaries without the 6.25% increase on Friday, 24 July.”

The City urged the South African Municipal Workers Union (Samwu) to agree to the 6.25% increase offer.

“Organised labour is requested to accept the above-mentioned implementation method and to assist the City in the management of possible negative reaction from the workforce.”

The metro added that it had approached court in order to interdict the protests which saw trucks being set on fire, damage to municipal buildings and trash being spilt in the streets.

“The City is troubled by the recent unprotected industrial action that took place which resulted in the damage of key infrastructure, property and City buildings commence with a process of identifying those responsible is far management has since approached the court in order to interdict this illegal property.”

READ MORE: WATCH: Trucks go up in flames as protests continue in Pretoria

The City’s administrator, Mpho Nawa, had argued this week that the metro’s finances were declining due to lockdown.

He said National Treasury had also raised this concern of finances with the Tshwane metro.

“It is public knowledge that over the passage of time, the city’s revenue has been declining and this problem was compounded by under-collection due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

“These challenges were not only pervasive to the Tshwane metro, as all sectors of our economy are bleeding as a result of coronavirus pandemic.”

Here is a summary of the metro’s finances:

  • Actual average collection for April to June 2020, was 68%.
  • This equals a loss of income for the three months, of more than R2.8 billion.
  • The revenue in the budget is earned and cash collected during the year – the amount shown as revenue is not available in cash at the beginning of the year.
  • Employee costs increased from 30% of operational expenditure to 31.5% of operational expenditure in the 2020/2021 financial year.
  • In the 2020/2021 budget, R931 million (12%) had to be cut from materials, contracted services, transfers, and general expenditure.

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