nelsonmandelabayMoneyweb reports that the Democratic Municipal and Allied Workers Union of SA (Demawusa) recently attached assets belonging to the Nelson Mandela Bay municipality over an outstanding R8.8 million in pay owed to 36 workers.  

The outstanding payment dates back to 2015 for the workers who were insourced after Labour Relations Act amendments required temporary workers to be permanently placed after three months.  The 36 workers were employed in a call centre operated by the municipality, but had been short-paid since 2015.  A dispute was declared in 2019 and was referred to arbitration, resulting in the workers being granted backpay of R8.8 million, which had to be paid by 15 December 2020.  “The municipality ignored this legally binding award and did not pay the workers. As a fighting union, we are taking this to its logical conclusion. We do not want municipalities to smile at the expense of workers,” said Demawusa’s Siphiwo Ndunyana.  The assets attached include a fleet of trucks as well as other vehicles.  But the union called a halt to the auction of the assets as it said the municipality had agreed to settle the outstanding payments within a few days.  Meantime, Nelson Mandela Bay municipality is in a stand-off with National Treasury, which has withheld R1.6 billion in conditional grant funding from the city, because of its failure to elect a mayor and a properly qualified municipal manager.

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