Following a three week labour dispute between the City of Tshwane and municipal workers which thwarted service delivery, services are gradually returning to normal.
This, according to a statement by the City on Tuesday after a proposal was put on the table to settle the dispute with the South African Municipal Workers’ Union (Samwu) and Allied Trade Union (Imatu). City spokesperson Selby Bokaba said residents had to endure a torrid three week period of service interruptions which took inordinately longer to restore due to the labour dispute that beset the City.
However, on Friday, the City’s leadership tabled a proposal to the labour unions aimed at breaking the logjam. “The parties undertook to seek a mandate from their members yesterday [Monday] whether or not to accept the offer on the staggered payment of the benchmarking collective agreement monies,” Bokaba said. “The City remains confident that the workers would accept the offer and return to work and expedite service delivery to our communities”.
In the meantime, progress was made during the long weekend to reduce the backlog on service interruptions, the City said. Bokaba said the following issues were resolved over the weekend:
• 92 cases were resolved regarding power interruptions affecting hospices, hospitals, potable water and sewer pump stations and waste water treatment plants;
• 88 major water leaks (hydrants, sidewalk leaks and burst water meters) were resolved;
• 143 leaking water meters were attended to;
• 10 area water interruptions and 316 sewer blockages were resolved;
• 34 low voltage block area interruptions;
• 482 cases resolved of outstanding single consumer power interruptions, and;
• 28 medium voltage power interruptions.
Household waste collection service, including landfill sites and garden waste sites resumed to normality with effect from Monday. Bokaba added that services would be ramped up in respect of water and electricity distribution, water interruptions, sewer blockages as well as refuse collection as the week progressed.
“The A Re Yeng bus services resumed operations this morning and a decision is still pending as to when the Tshwane Bus Services (TBS) will be back on the road, however, it is expected that the TBS buses will be operational soon.”
Tshwane head administrator Mpho Nawa said he was relatively pleased with the progress made during the long weekend and hoped the backlog would be expeditiously cleared so that services could return to normal.
A lot of cleaning up has taken place in various areas of the City where litter was dumped on the streets, and essential services did a splendid job at the weekend repairing and restoring services, although some cases are yet to be resolved and are still pending; we are gradually ramping up the speed at which we are providing services,” Nawa said.
“This is a work in progress and we are making significant strides. We wish to once more, offer our sincerest apologies to our residents for the inconvenience caused. We live in hope that we will be back to full strength before the end of this week.”
News24 previously reported that City’s head offices, Tshwane House, was damaged during the protests by municipal workers. Three people have since been arrested and charged with public violence and malicious damage to property.