Today's Labour News

newsThis news aggregator site highlights South African labour news from a wide range of internet and print sources. Each posting has a synopsis of the source article, together with a link or reference to the original. Postings cover the range of labour related matters from industrial relations to generalist human resources.

news shutterstockIn our Tuesday morning roundup, see
summaries of our selection of South African
labour-related reports.


Eastern Cape nursing unions call for protection after deadly robbery at a rural clinic

News24 reports that nursing unions have called on the Eastern Cape Department of Health to ensure proper safety measures for staff after another robbery, at a rural clinic in Ngqeleni, near Mthatha. A security guard was shot and killed during a robbery at Maqanyeni Clinic on Friday night. Dakhile Ngobe from Tyeks Security Services died in a hail of bullets when four suspects attacked him and his female colleague. Ngobe's colleague was not injured. Eastern Cape police spokesperson Captain Welile Matyolo said Ngobe was shot when four suspects demanded entry and, after he refused, a suspect opened fire killing him. The suspects took five computers from the clinic and have yet to be apprehended. Sivuyile Mange of the Democratic Nursing Organisation of SA (Denosa) said nurses no longer felt safe in rural public healthcare facilities. "Safety and security is still a major concern in health facilities where nurses get assaulted, raped and mugged. It is because it's easy for criminals to enter health facilities and do as they wish. The security officers are only armed with batons and there's no armed response when there are such incidents," he said. United Nurses Trade Union of SA’s Linamandla Malindi said: "Companies contracted by the department need to equip their security guards with proper equipment to fight crime," adding that it was the responsibility of the department to protect its employees and assets.   Eastern Cape Health MEC Nomakhosazana Meth condemned the incident and urged the police to work tirelessly to arrest the criminals. Mange reported they had escalated the issue of criminal incidents at public healthcare facilities to the bargaining chamber so that the employer could be held accountable in ensuring the safety of department of health employees in the Eastern Cape.

Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Sithandiwe Velaphi at News24

Philippi gangsters say they’ll only stop the killings if government pays them protection money

GroundUp reports that following the murder of two security guards in Philippi East last week, members of an extortion gang stated that they, and not security companies, should be paid to protect City of Cape Town infrastructure and workers. “All we want is for the government to understand that the protection of their workers and companies contracted to them is our business,” stated one of two members of a Philippi gang that GroundUp spoke to on Friday. The pair said neither they nor their gang were involved in shooting the security guards on 23 April, but claimed a rival gang was responsible. The extortionists said they and other gangs had met and agreed that security companies would be attacked if they came into their areas. The security companies were doing what the gangs are “supposed to be doing”, and by attacking them “we are showing they are useless”, the extortionists indicated.   They said if government paid the gangs to protect infrastructure and staff, there would be no intimidation, threats or killings. Government employees and their contractors were targeted because “the government does not seem to want to negotiate with us”.   The gangsters warned: “There will be no security company coming to our areas and escorting government workers and their contracted companies because that duty is for us to do. When the government does not want to meet us half-way, more lives will be lost and there will be bloodshed.” They said what they wanted from the authorities was “a few thousands of rands from the millions of rands that they are paying the security companies”.   One of the gang members added:   “R50,000 a month to protect workers from five different areas would not harm the government.” . Mayco Member for Water and Sanitation Zahid Badroodien said the City was “shocked at the senseless act which had claimed the lives of two men hard at work serving the community”.

Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Sandiso Phaliso at GroundUp

Sassa staff in eMkhondo ‘traumatised’ by ‘rituals’ performed in office after hours

The Citizen reports that SA Social Security Agency (Sassa) officials in eMkhondo (formerly Piet-Retief), Mpumalanga have been left “traumatised and dejected” after footage emerged of alleged “rituals” being conducted in their office after hours. Two weeks ago workers at the regional office complained about finding needles scattered on the floor almost daily. Authorities looked at security footage and found five people, including two Sassa officials and three unknown men believed to be traditional healers, in the office after hours. In the footage, shared online, men can be seen moving around the office from one desk to another. Sassa Mpumalanga spokesperson Senzeni Ngubeni described the footage as ‘disturbing’ and added: “The entire matter is currently under investigation to determine if consequence management can be taken.” The office has since been evacuated and temporarily closed. However, the public is still being assisted with Sassa-related business in a different location. Additionally, Sassa said a process of deep cleaning the office was underway and therapy was also being offered to affected individuals.

Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Enkosi Selane and watch the video at The Citizen


CEO Neal Froneman’s fall in pay to R55m reflects Sibanye’s woes

BL Premium reports that the pay of Sibanye-Stillwater’s CEO, Neal Froneman, has diminished from the R300m he earned in the 2021 financial year to R55m in the year to end-December. His remuneration echoes the company’s fortunes, which have been hit by a plunge in the basket price of platinum group metals (PGMs) in the period. The group reported a loss for the year ended December of R37.4bn, from a profit of R19bn in the corresponding period in 2022. These results saw Froneman’s pay slashed from R189m in the 2022 financial year to R55m in the year under review. Sibanye in 2021 raised eyebrows amongst shareholders when it paid Froneman R300m. However, that year Sibanye reported a profit of R33.8bn. The lion’s share of Froneman’s 2021 pay was made up of long-term share incentives that he was awarded in 2018. The poor performance in 2023 saw its top brass, including Froneman, take a haircut on pay. Chair of the remuneration committee Tim Cumming said shareholders had raised several concerns about executive pay. In particular, they had pushed back at “perceived excessive upside” long term incentive (LTI) opportunities for executives. After an in-depth review, the application of an LTI ‘on-award multiple’ – by which the quantum of the LTI awards was factored up based on the executive’s personal/strategic delivery scorecard result – has been discontinued. Another change Sibanye introduced is refining the scorecards used for the evaluation of performance for short-term incentive purposes by introducing a combined operational and personal/strategic delivery scorecard as opposed to previously having them as separate scorecards.

Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Kabelo Khumalo at BusinessLive (subscriber access only)

Solidarity slams Minerals Council for saying SA mineworkers are best paid

Business Report writes that Solidarity has vehemently disagreed with the Minerals Council of SA’s (MCSA’s) assertion that mineworkers are among the best-paid employees in SA. The trade union on Friday argued instead that mining bosses in the country were the highest paid in the world, at a time when the sector was struggling.   This came after the MCSA (previously called the Chamber of Mines) in its latest Mining Matters bulletin issued said salaries in the mining sector grew by R12 billion to R186.5bn in 2023 compared to R174.2bn a year earlier. "Over the past 15 years, increases in wages across the mining sector have been above the consumer price index (CPI), reflecting both the real wage gains in the sector by employees and a consistent narrowing of the earnings gap between lower- and higher-income employees,“ the MCSA claimed.   However, Solidarity disagreed that mineworkers were among the best-paid industrial workers in SA. Solidarity’s general secretary Gideon du Plessis pointed out that mineworkers were unable to retire early because of the low remuneration in the sector. “No, I don't agree that SA mineworkers are paid well, but will rather argue that mining bosses are some of the highest paid in the world. Although there are certain mining houses that do pay well, there is not a single mineworker that is overpaid and able to retire early,” Du Plessis indicated. Worse still, Du Plessis said, there was currently a subtle “strike by mining houses” that has resulted in “mining bosses and investors being not keen to invest in new developments due to various political, logistical, service delivery, structural and regulatory challenges” that they are facing in SA.

Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Tawanda Karombo at Business Report

Inside Sibanye-Stillwater’s war with illegal miners

BL Premium reports that its 2023 annual report released on Friday, Sibanye-Stillwater laid bare its efforts to tackle the illegal miners who have infiltrated its operations to fleece the group of millions of rand in precious metals. The group said its SA gold operations were a target for organised crime syndicates dealing in precious metals, with illegal underground mining being the company’s biggest security threat. The group recorded more than 450 incidents of illegal mining in 2023, with 1,239 arrests made at its gold operations. The mining house also reported 2,010 copper-related incidents.   “Illegal miners and syndicate leaders have intensified their use of complicit employees to gain access to the underground workings and compromise our access controls. In terms of addressing the integrity of security officials, protection services continues to work with the group’s organisational growth function, with Psira [the Private Security Industry Regulatory Authority], and with business partners as we refine our efforts to address collusion,” the Sibanye reported. For the year under review, 451 incidents of collusion with illegal miners were recorded.   Sibanye said it had uncovered a modus operandi in which some of its employees cloned their fingerprints through latex moulds and gave their clock cards to illegal miners. Of concern was that while contractors made up just 2,956 of the group’s 22,300 gold mining workforce, they constituted 56% of incidents of collusion with illegal miners. The company decried the “leniency” shown by the justice system to illegal miners arrested at its operations, saying the sentences handed down did not serve as a deterrence. Illegal mining activities are said to cost SA’s formal mining industry more than R7bn annually.

Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Kabelo Khumalo at BusinessLive (subscriber access only)

Over 140 undocumented migrants nabbed at illegal mine near Rustenburg

The Citizen reports that the military, police, and Hawks swooped down to close an illegal mining operation in the North West recently, arresting over 140 suspected undocumented foreigners in the process.   The suspects were nabbed in Tlhatlaganyane village outside Rustenburg. They were expected to appear in Mankwe Magistrate’s Court on Monday to face charges of contravening the Immigration Act.   The 141 suspects are mainly from Lesotho and Zimbabwe. The arrest also gave a glimpse into the equipment needed to run a minor illegal mine.   Among the tools confiscated were 59 generators, 46 jackhammers, five gas cylinders, 49 wheelbarrows, 30 spades and 21 shovels. The scourge of illegal mining has spread across the country, with miners often linked to other serious crimes. Recently, reports of miners hiring assassins to take out members of rival groups have increased. But, the Justice Crime Prevention and Security (JCPS) cluster has previously stressed that the government was dealing with the issue of illegal mining.   It revealed that between April and August last year, more than 7,000 suspects involved in illegal mining were arrested for contravening immigration regulations.

Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Kyle Zeeman at The Citizen


Presidency denies spying on SABC executives

BL Premium reports that war has erupted between President Cyril Ramaphosa’s office and the SA Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) over the alleged targeting of the national broadcaster’s executive through a security vetting process by the State Security Agency (SSA).   Presidency spokesperson Vincent Magwenya has denied that executives of the SABC, including CEO Nomsa Chabeli and head of news, Moshoeshoe Monare, were being targeted ahead of the general election. Monare was appointed into his position at the national broadcaster two years ago.   He was requested by the SSA on 18 April to be vetted again and undergo a top security test, including the taking of a polygraph test. The call occurred after Ramaphosa was heard in a leaked meeting of the ANC’s national executive committee (NEC) meeting in April bemoaning alleged negative media reports regarding the governing party ahead of the 29 May polls.   Magwenya told a media briefing on Monday: “The SABC made the request to the SSA to conduct a vetting process on Monare, as per the established practice with all SABC executives … Upon his appointment, Monare consented to the vetting process, completed the form that was furnished to him, and went further to submit some but not all of the required information. The process was then stalled when Monare did not want to submit himself to a polygraph test, which is part of the vetting process. Consequently, the vetting of Monare was never completed.” In an interview with the SABC shortly after the presidency’s media briefing, Monare questioned why he was requested to undergo a polygraph test by the SSA two years after his appointment while none of the other SABC executives were required to do the same.

Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Thando Maeko at BusinessLive (subscriber access only). Lees ook, Ramaphosa se ‘invloed’ by SAUK bevraagteken, by Maroela Media

Other internet posting(s) in this news category

  • Cosatu alliance purposely created a system of economic exclusion, DA says, at BusinessLive


Petrol price will be hiked on Wednesday, but diesel gets a cut

Fin24 reports that petrol prices will be hiked by 37c a litre on Wednesday, while wholesale diesel prices will fall by 30c a litre (0.05% sulphur) and 36c a litre (0.005% sulphur). In Gauteng, petrol will now retail at R25.49 a litre, while on the coast, it will cost R24.70, reaching levels last seen in October 2023.     But diesel is falling to the lowest levels since February this year. The wholesale price of diesel will be R22.15 a litre in Gauteng and R21.36 on the coast. The wholesale price of illuminating paraffin will be cut by 19c a litre. South African fuel prices are largely determined by international oil costs and the rand exchange rate, as oil is priced in dollars. Oil surged this month amid military tensions between Israel and Iran. Diesel prices fell due to seasonal changes and reduced demand for the fuel in the Northern Hemisphere as the colder weather subsided.   Meanwhile, the rand weakened from R18.04 to R18.90 per dollar over the past month.

Read the original of the short report in the above regard at Fin24


Numsa welcomes SIU probe into botched SAA deal

IOL News reports that the National Union of Metalworkers of SA (Numsa) has welcomed the decision of the National Assembly’s portfolio committee on public enterprises to refer the botched SAA-Takatso consortium deal to the Special Investigating (SIU). According to the trade union, the deal was corrupted from the beginning, and there have been attempts to sweep it under the carpet. Numsa spokesperson Phakamile Hlubi-Majola claimed that the involvement of the SIU would shed light on many underhand dealings in the sale of SAA to Takatso. She said Minister of Public Enterprises Pravin Gordhan must be held accountable for what went on at SAA and claimed that Gordhan had tried for months to keep the deal secret and the fact that the sale of SAA had been undervalued. Hlubi-Majola continued: “SAA is a State Owned Entity, and every aspect of the deal must be open to the public to scrutinise. Gordhan did not follow proper processes when appointing Takatso as the preferred equity partner for SAA. Numsa is vindicated by this decision because we consistently opposed the deal from the beginning and we raised the alarm early on to say the process was corrupted and therefore, the deal was tainted.”   Numsa also expressed concern about the future of the airline given that there was no certainty after the collapsed deal.

Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Siyabonga Mkhwanazi at IOL News


Civil servants took home billions in extra pay over the last five years

The Citizen reports that civil servants have been generously remunerated over the last five years – taking home nearly R3 billion’s worth of performance bonuses, 13th cheques and incentives. Department of Public Service and Administration (DPSA) Minister Noxolo Kieviet revealed the exorbitant figure during a recent Q&A session in Parliament. National departments reportedly spent more than R726 million in performance bonuses between 2019 and 2024, with almost half paid out in 2022. Meanwhile, provincial administrations spent R2.2 billion in bonuses – taking up two-thirds of the total expenditure.   This amount went towards financing the 13th cheques of doctors, teachers and nurses among other civil servants. According to DPSA spokesperson Moses Mushi, government spent over R2.4 billion on performance bonuses alone during the last five years. Justifying the expenditure, Mushi said the 13th cheque or “service bonus” was an incentive to encourage employees in the public service.   “This has been a standard remuneration philosophy across public and private sectors,” said Mushi, who added that the number of staff earning performance bonuses declined from 218,792 in 2028 to 3,767 this year. Meanwhile, Kiviet said government employees earned their performance bonuses based on the audit outcomes of their departments. Ironically, she revealed that 158 civil servants in national government received a total of R21.8 million in pay while on suspension.   Furthermore, 237 suspended officials in provincial governments received a total of R107 million.

Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Vukosi Maluleke at The Citizen. Read too, R3 billion ‘performance’ bonuses for government workers, at BusinessTech


Solidarity warns that ‘racial madness’ in real estate sector could leave thousands of agents unemployed

Maroela Media reports that trade union Solidarity has warned about widespread job losses in the real estate sector if strict black economic empowerment (BEE) requirements are not prevented from coming into force as a condition for the issuing of fidelity fund certificates. The Property Practitioners Regulatory Authority (PPRA) recently announced the requirement of level 8 black economic empowerment (BEE) scores for businesses in the real estate sector, which would require black ownership of more than 50% of businesses. “We are utterly concerned about these new regulations and the threat they will pose to existing jobs,” said Johan Roos, organiser of the Solidarity Communication and Marketing Network. Indicating that these regulations would be opposed to protect the work of Solidarity members, he noted: “Some of the real estate agents have been in this industry for decades and thus this is their specialist field. With these racially mad rules, we will not only face more unemployment, but we will also lose irreplaceable experience and knowledge.” Renate Pieterse, network coordinator of the public sector at Solidarity, commented: “Businesses will be hesitant to hire white staff as they will not be able to receive the necessary BEE points. Other businesses will have to resort to layoffs to meet these numbers. Approximately 30,000 of these real estate agents are believed to be white and although it is argued that sole proprietorships are not targeted, this is not at all reassuring coming from a race-obsessed government.”

Read the full original of the report in the above regard in Afrikaans at Maroela Media


Three in Free State court over alleged Covid-19 Ters fraud

TimesLIVE reports that the Hawks in the Free State on Monday announced that the owners of two companies alleged to have scammed the Covid-19 Temporary Employer/Employee Relief Scheme (Ters) were arrested last week. Tlotliso Molaba, Lehlohonolo Class Motaung and Lelokonyana Isak Letseng appeared in the Phuthaditjhaba Magistrate’s Court on Friday on charges of fraud.   Capt Christopher Singo reported:   “A preliminary investigation conducted by the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) at the department of employment & labour discovered alleged fraudulent activities. It is alleged that two companies — Afrikhan Source owned by Molaba and Motaung, and Izuz Gibbor owned by Letseng — applied for Ters.”   During March 2020 and October 2020, Afrikhan Source applied for Covid-19 Ters on behalf of individuals who were alleged to have been affected by the Covid-19 pandemic. The Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) made nine payments in the estimated amount of R1,396,053 to the company’s account between September 2020 and December 2020. Letseng was alleged to have done a similar thing for his company, claiming Ters funds between July 2020 and October 2021. His company, Izuz Gibbor, allegedly received nine payments from the UIF amounting to R101,555. The SIU alleges the applicants for whom the companies were allegedly applying had never worked for them. The accused were granted R10,000 bail and the case was postponed to 11 June.

Read the full original of the report in the above regard at BusinessLive

Eastern Cape businessman allegedly pocketed R300,000 from Covid-19 Ters fund without paying workers

IOL News reports that a 34-year-old Eastern Cape businessman is the latest to appear in court over allegations of Covid-19 Temporary Employer Relief Scheme (Ters) fraud. Luyanda Brian Vava appeared in the East London Magistrate’s Court on Monday.   He was arrested in a joint operation between the Hawks and the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA and faces allegations of fraud, forgery and uttering. Vava, who is the sole director of Widelink Technologies, is accused of committing the fraud during the 2020 Covid-19 lockdown. Hawks spokesperson Warrant-Officer Ndiphiwe Mhlakuvana indicated: “It is alleged that he (Vava) intentionally and unlawfully lodged a claim from Unemployed Insurance Fund (UIF) on behalf of his employees through his company.”   The employees reportedly denied receiving payment from the employer which led to an investigation by Special Investigation Unit (SIU). The matter was later referred to the Hawks for a thorough probe, which revealed that material misrepresentation had been made to defraud the UIF. This led to actual prejudice of over R300,000.00 suffered in the employees’ claim. Vava was arrested on 29 April and following his appearance was released on R1,000 bail.   The matter was adjourned to 31 May for further investigation.

Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Jolene Marriah-Maharaj at IOL News


  • Testing positive for cannabis at work in South Africa – what you need to know, at BusinessTech
  • Cosatu says Climate Change Bill a welcome and long overdue intervention, at Business Report
  • SA’s teachers deserve more than criticism … here’s how we can support them, at Mail & Guardian
  • Mass exodus of skilled South Africans – and the jobs they’re tapping into, at BusinessTech
  • Extension of SA troops in DRC and Mozambique leaves experts baffled, at BusinessLive (subscriber access only)


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