COSATU and SAMWU Free State launch rolling mass action against non-payment of salaries and deductions by municipalities

The Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) and its affiliate, the South African Municipal Workers Union (SAMWU) in the Free State intend on launching rolling mass action against the growing tendency of many Free State municipalities defaulting third party deductions and salaries as well as delaying paying salaries.

Over the years we have experienced serious problems with many municipalities in the province unashamedly failing to pay over the provident and medical aid deductions to the relevant funds. This has resulted in many workers being kept way beyond their retirement age on the wage bill of the municipality due to the unavailability of money in the fund or being forced to retired penniless. Some workers have passed on with their dependents left stranded because there are no monies in the fund or policies have lapsed due to non-payment.

Tragically families have lost loved ones because they could not have timeous access to specialized medical attention as their medical aid policies were cancelled due to the employers’ failure to pay deductions. Many of our members have ended up clogging the public health system despite the fact their medical aid contributions are deducted every month but not paid over.

COSATU and SAMWU have raised this matter several times with the Provincial Government and South African Local Government Association (SALGA), to no avail. The non-payment of third parties is a fraudulent criminal activity.

We have opened criminal cases against Maluti-A-Phofung Municipality and its water entity, Letsemeng, Masilonyana, Kopanong Municipality and Tokologo Municipality. Law enforcement management did not show interest to handle the matters as most of the cases were promptly closed without even engaging the complainants. The Federation will be taking this matter up with Independent Police Investigating Directorate.

COSATU and SAMWU will be embarking on rolling mass action across all the Districts in the Free State:  

*    Matjhabeng 07 September 2023

*    Metsimaholo 14 September 2023

*    Mohokare 21 September 2023

*    Maluti-A-Phofung 28 September 2023

The Federation condemns in the strongest possible terms municipalities prioritizing paying service providers over the payment of salaries or workers. This happens due to corrupt outsourcing implemented by municipalities despite the availability of skilled workers on their own payrolls.

The first phase of our rolling mass action includes marches to the municipalities to hand over the memorandums of demands. Workers must be paid their salaries on the due date without exception, excuse or delay!

Issued by COSATU Free State

For further enquiries please contact COSATU Provincial Secretary Monyatso oa Mahlatsi on 051 447 5499 or 076 115 9923