Mass dismissal of workers at ESKORT in Heidelberg shocking

The Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) in Gauteng has noted with great concern the mass dismissal of workers at ESKORT in Heidelberg. Wage negotiations between workers and the company included among others, demands for a 15% salary increase, the conversion of casual workers into permanent employees, housing allowance, medical aid, and equal salary for work of equal value. According to the information received, negotiations deadlocked when ESKORT tabled a final offer of a 6% salary increase.

Workers rejected this offer and in retaliation, abandoned their workplaces.  These workers were given an ultimatum to return to work and soon went back as instructed. This is contrary to what is stated on the dismissal letters issued by ESKORT. Shortly after workers resumed their duties, the company issued notices of dismissal to more than 1500 workers. Whilst dealing with the shock of terminations, workers were informed to reapply for their jobs.

COSATU finds the action by ESKORT to be unreasonable and will henceforth assist these workers to get their jobs back.

We calls on ESKORT management to reinstate all dismissed workers with immediate effect and allow for constructive engagements to take place. If this call is not heeded, COSATU will have no option but to initiate a fierce process that will ensure the reinstatement of these workers.

Issued by COSATU Gauteng

Provincial Secretary – Louisa Modikwe: 066 182 2402

Provincial Chairperson – Amos Monyela: 079 493 5002