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 Wednesday morning roundup, see
summaries of our selection of South African
labour-related reports.


Bombela assures passengers of uninterrupted Gautrain services amid Numsa strike

The Star reports that the Bombela Concession Company (Bombela) has assured passengers that Gautrain services will remain uninterrupted amid the ongoing strike by the National of Metalworkers of SA (Numsa) that commenced on Monday. Spokesperson Kesagee Nayager noted that train services have been operating according to their normal schedule and that Gautrain bus operations have not been affected by the strike as they are subcontracted to other entities. He said: “The BOC (Bombela Operating Company) is responsible to maintain compliance of rail operations with all safety standards and regulations. BOC has confirmed to us that all their staff that are currently operating the rail service during the strike are fully compliant with safety regulations.”   Numsa members have embarked on a strike over wage increases and other demands. Numsa spokesperson Phakamile Hlubi-Majola indicated that the trade union had initially demanded a 13% wage increase, but has amended it to 9%. It was further demanding medical aid provision of 60% from the employer, with 40% coming from workers, alongside a monthly housing allowance of R2,000. Additionally, the trade union claims that employees work extra hours for which they are not paid overtime. Meantime, the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) has stepped in to try to resolve the strike. “CCMA has asked us to participate in Section 150 mediation to try and resolve the strike. Section 150 of the Labour Relations Act gives CCMA power to call parties to participate in mediation if it is in the public interest. Numsa has agreed to participate,” Hlubi-Majola said.

Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Hope Mafu at The Star. Read too, CCMA intervenes in Numsa Gautrain strike, at BusinessLive


Another SANDF soldier killed in DRC after hand grenade explodes near sleeping quarters

IOL News reports that the SA National Defence Force (SANDF) has confirmed that another soldier has been killed in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) after a hand grenade exploded close to the sleeping quarters on the base in Beni. The SA soldier was stationed with the UN Organisation Stabilisation Mission in the DRC (Monusco) in North Kivu. The SANDF said the incident happened on Monday and it was still unclear what had caused the hand grenade to explode, however an investigation was underway.   “A SANDF Board of Inquiry including the United Nations officials will be convened to investigate the circumstances surrounding the incident,” the statement advised. The SANDF said the name of the deceased would be announced when all processes to bring his mortal remains back home have been concluded and his family has been informed of his passing.

Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Sinenhlanhla Masilela at IOL News. Read too, SANDF soldier killed in DRC hand grenade explosion, cause unclear, at News24. And also, Another SANDF soldier killed in DRC, at EWN

Urgent search under way for hijacked deputy director of water and sanitation department

News24 reports that Sello Machitje, the deputy director of the water and sanitation department, was reported missing after being hijacked on Monday. A family spokesperson, Kgosi Makgorogo, advised that Machitje departed his residence at approximately 17:00, intending to travel to the Eastern Cape.   "We found a receipt in his bakkie that showed he put in petrol in Pretoria at around 17:30," he reported, adding that between 20:00 and 21:00, Machitje's wife tried to call him, but calls went unanswered. At 22:00, Machitje's sister's calls also went unanswered. "That's when they called Tracker to check on the vehicle, but they refused to give the location and said they needed a case number," Makgorogo said. Police spokesperson Colonel Noxolo Kweza confirmed that a missing person’s case was opened.   Police, together with private security, traced Machitje's vehicle to Alexandra, where a 53-year-old suspect was arrested for possession of a stolen and hijacked vehicle. The police are still searching for the victim

Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Iavan Pijoos at News24

Other internet posting(s) in this news category

  • Ramaphosa ‘diep bedroef’ ná soldate se skagdood, by Maroela Media


Another fatality-free milestone for Murray & Roberts Cementation

Mining Weekly reports that a hard-won culture of safety has earned Murray & Roberts Cementation the accolade of seven-million fatality-free shifts from the Association of Mine Managers of SA (AMMSA).   The award was presented to Murray & Roberts Cementation project executive Kethu Mokgatlha by AMMSA president Mosala Letebele at a ceremony in Johannesburg, in June, to recognise the company’s outstanding achievement. The seven-million shifts were undertaken over a period of almost nine years and spanned five different shaft-sinking projects in SA. The work undertaken also covered specialist interventions such as ore pass rehabilitation, grout sealing and underground support systems. Murray & Roberts Cementation risk executive Trevor Schultz said the award was particularly heartening in a working environment that carried a range of technical risk factors. He pointed to the culture of safety, developed over decades of intense focus and commitment, as the foundation for this safety milestone. “It also requires that everyone in the business – from those at the rockface right through to the executive management – is focused on the same goal. It starts with carefully structured training at entry level and a continuous emphasis on our corporate values, which prioritise safe working practices and a constructive mindset that must be developed over time,” Schultz explained.

Read the full original of the report in the above regard at Mining Weekly


Foreign banks increasingly hire locals to deal with SA’s compliance minefield

BL Premium reports that the Prudential Authority (PA), the regulator of SA’s financial services sector, says foreign banks operating in SA often face a compliance minefield. Accordingly, these banks are now increasing their employment of locals who understand the lay of the land. The regulator said in its latest annual report: “The branches of foreign banks have maintained relatively healthy levels of profitability, capital and liquidity, with continued support from their respective head offices. However, these branches often face compliance challenges when implementing directives issued by the PA, partly due to their reliance on their head office. Notably, there has been an increased focus on appointing senior executives with SA risk, compliance and regulatory experience at these branches.” The PA earlier this year successfully liquidated the local branch of Pakistani lender Habib Bank after the National Treasury placed it under curatorship over governance issues. The watchdog said it was consistently enhancing the regulation, oversight and monitoring of foreign representative offices, adding that it was committed to creating a supportive environment for foreign banking institutions’ representative offices operating in SA. The regulator flagged smaller banks and indicated that “succession planning has been highlighted as a crucial factor in ensuring that a pool of experienced and qualified bankers are readily available to smaller banks that often struggle with recruiting and retaining such talent.”

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

PSA concerned about exodus of nearly 20,000 nurses to foreign countries

The Mercury reports that the Public Servants Association (PSA) has raised concerns about the large-scale loss of nurses leaving the profession or emigrating to foreign countries in search of lucrative salaries and better opportunities. “Government should urgently invest in skills development and better salaries for nurses to foster the retention of nurses,” the trade union said. It added that there seemed to be an increase in nurses leaving SA for jobs in Canada, Germany and Ireland based on improved opportunities. “The shortage of nurses across the world creates gaps in the health environment, with more attractive places across the world for nurses to work in. Nurses are forced to look for greener pastures owing to poor leadership in the nursing fraternity, poor and unsafe working conditions, in adequate uniforms, low salaries, as well as a lack of training and development opportunities,” the PSA argued. It said government must address the crisis in the health sector, especially in the nursing profession, and added: “With almost 20,000 nurses being lost to foreign countries offering better opportunities, the government needs to restore primary healthcare in South Africa, especially in view of the introduction of the National Health Insurance Scheme. Immediate interventions are required to retain nurses to avoid the exodus crisis and ensure continued service delivery to communities.”

Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Yogashen Pillay at The Mercury

Other internet posting(s) in this news category

  • Hiring activity in SA remains volatile, according to job market report, at Personal Finance
  • UCT announces early commencement date for new Vice Chancellor, at Cape Times
  • Corporate South Africa’s top jobs still a preserve of white boys’ club, at Sunday World
  • Joburg Water accused of neopotism, at Mail & Guardian (subscriber access only)


Nearly 22 million adults in South Africa are without a Matric Qualification

The Citizen reports that according to Stats SA, approximately 31% of South African adults are not qualified for further and higher education. This excludes some 21 million adults from a wide range of skilled and professional areas of employment. The results of the 2022 census show that only 37.6% of the South African population have completed matric, which is a significant concern. The lack of a matric qualification is linked to poorer earning capacity, higher unemployment, and financial instability. It is everyone’s responsibility to address these issues and provide opportunities for second chances for adults without a matric. The Department of Basic Education’s (DBE’s) Amended Senior Certificate (ASC) programme provides these young adults with a promising future. The ASC, or self-study adult matric, is equivalent to the National Senior Certificate (NSC) awarded to high school graduates. To qualify, individuals must be 21 years or older and complete exams for six subjects, with final exams determining 100% of the grade. Seeing this opportunity for improvement and determined to be part of the change, UCT Online High School announced the launch of an 18-month Adult Matric Preparation Programme delivered entirely online at a cost of R2,195 per month. Most adult learners complete the ASC part-time, so the length of time taken to complete it can be longer, depending on their capacity for commitment.   And while they can complete their studies from anywhere, they must sit for their exams in South Africa. Adults can work and study at the same time due to the flexibility which allows them to structure their study time around existing commitments.

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

Other internet posting(s) in this news category

  • Tuition to employment: Shoprite Group bursaries offer students chance of a lifetime, at Business Report


Adjudicator orders pension fund to reimburse member R800,000 paid to fraudster while he was incarcerated

BL Premium reports that the Pension Funds Adjudicator (PFA) has ordered the Municipal Gratuity Fund to reimburse a former Pikitup employee for funds that were misappropriated by a syndicate while he was incarcerated. The fund disbursed more than R800,000 to a syndicate involved in identity theft and fraudulent claims for retirement fund benefits. PFA adjudicator Muvhango Lukhaimane ordered the fund to pay the complainant the benefit due to him with interest because the fund had a fiduciary duty to exercise its functions with care, due diligence and good faith. The complainant was aggrieved that the fund processed a withdrawal benefit claim without his presence, and subsequently paid the benefit to the wrong person based on fraudulent documents. In September  2018, the complainant’s fund credit of R810,413 was paid to an incorrect person while he was in custody. The complainant contended that the photo on the identity document submitted to the fund did not belong to him. The fund considered an affidavit from correctional services claiming to represent him. But, the affidavit was not stamped and signed as required. The complainant also submitted that the fund accepted a withdrawal claim form that had errors. In her determination, Lukhaimane said the fund had failed in its duties towards the complainant when it did not seek to  further confirm his imprisonment status before paying out. Thus its act and/or omission was reckless. She instructed the fund to ensure that proper mechanisms, and checks and balances are in place to combat fraud.

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

University of Johannesburg locks horns with fired professor over withheld pension payout

Sunday World reports that disgraced former deputy vice-chancellor of finance at the University of Johannesburg (UJ) Jaco van Schoor is still fighting the institution in a bid to lay hands on his pension payout, eight years after he was shown the door after being entangled in a corruption scandal. Van Schoor, who was fired alongside the institution’s chairperson of council, Roy Marcus, has tried to get the Financial Services Tribunal to force the university to pay his pension bounty. He worked for the institution from 1998 until his dismissal in 2017 after his alleged criminal activities came to the fore. The university withheld his pension benefits pending the civil and criminal litigation it has pursued against Van Schoor, who then complained to the Pensions Fund Adjudicator (PFA). The PFA, while it found Van Schoor’s application to reconsider the university’s decision had been prescribed due to him having launched it more than three years after the fact, still gave him an audience. But, the Financial Services Tribunal found the PFA had bent over backwards to accommodate Van Schoor and set aside its decision to give Van Schoor a lifeline. This was after the university approached the tribunal to set aside the PFA’s decision. The tribunal found: “In seeking to re-interpret the complaint, the PFA drew a distinction which is not supported by a plain reading of the complaint. The complaint raised by the second respondent (van Schoor) clearly concerned the with­holding of his pension benefit…it appears the PFA accepted that the initial decision was time-barred, but the decision to continue to withhold was not.”

Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Bongani Mdakane at Sunday World


Woman wanted in connection with KZN Department of Health R32m fraud case arrested a year later in Sandton

Daily News reports that over a year later, a woman wanted in connection with a R32 million fraud case has finally been arrested by the Hawks. Last year, an arrest warrant was issued for Nandi Msimang, 52, and the Hawks were seeking her in connection with the fraud case. On Tuesday, KwaZulu-Natal Hawks spokesperson Lieutenant-Colonel Simphiwe Mhlongo reported: “She (Msimang) was arrested on Sunday, July 7, in Sandton and transported to KwaZulu-Natal, where she made her first court appearance in the Durban Specialised Commercial Crime Court today (Tuesday).” Msimang was remanded in custody and the case was postponed to 17 July for bail application. Her co-accused, Dr Sibongile Zungu and Sifiso Mtshali, will appear in the same court on 21 October for trial. It is alleged that in 2013, the KZN Department of Health awarded a 36-month lease to Mzansi Life-Care for hiring a mobile clinic. The contract was further extended without following the supply chain management process. In 2016, the department awarded Mzansi Life-Care a contract for the outright purchase of four mobile clinics to the value of R32m without following any supply chain management process. The vehicles were registered under Mzansi Life-Care instead of the department. At the time, the department did not obtain the roadworthy certificates and the vehicles were parked for three years. It is alleged that Mzansi Life-Care director Msimang fraudulently removed the four mobile clinics and sold them, resulting in the department losing R32m.

Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Thobeka Ngema at Daily News

Mogalakwena whistleblower charged for bringing municipality into disrepute

SABC News reports that an employee, who accused the Mogalakwena local municipality of siphoning off millions from projects, has been charged with bringing the municipality into disrepute. Following the circulation of documents containing damning allegations of corruption relating to irregular expenditure on various projects, Mayor Ngoako Taueatsoala addressed the media regarding accusations of corruption made by the employee on social media platforms.   According to Victor Mokonyane, the municipality spent R78 million to paint reservoirs and more than R60 million on legal fees. Taueatsoala denied the allegations made by Mokonyane. According to the mayor, the municipality has thus far spent R44 million on the refurbishment of 46 reservoirs and not R78 million as alleged by Mokonyane. Tauetsoala also indicated that Mokonyane, who is on sick leave, had not been suspended but would appear before a disciplinary committee. Meanwhile, Mokonyane reported that he has opened a criminal case against the municipality. All this is while the municipality is challenging a Polokwane High Court judgment that set aside the appointment of Moses Maluleka as municipal manager.   The matter will be heard in September.   Tauetsoala denied that the municipality has spent more than R60 million on the case, as alleged by Mokonyane

Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Michael Makungo at SABC News

Other internet posting(s) in this news category

  • Statements in Gqeberha city manager’s fraud case described as hearsay, at HeraldLive (subscriber access only)
  • City Power warns staff thieves ‘net is closing in’, at The Citizen


Eastern Cape teacher fired for kissing pupil, forcing her to touch his genitals

SowetanLive reports that an Eastern Cape high school teacher who sexually assaulted a pupil has been fired and ordered to never work with children again, despite a plea from his representatives at his hearing that he rather be given counselling and moved to another school instead.   Ayanda Fani from the Zweliyandila High School was fired for asking a grade 12 pupil to go to the toilet where he kissed her and forced her to touch his private parts. According to the Education Labour Relations Council (ELRC) commissioner Malusi Mbuli, Fani pleaded guilty to the allegations and the matter was finalised on 27 June. The employee’s representative argued that the employee by pleading guilty was remorseful and took responsibility for what happened. But, Mbuli pointed out: “The acts of misconduct committed by the employee in the context of his employment renders the employment relationship involving learners intolerable. This type of misconduct is also expressly prohibited by the employer. In this matter, the interests of the employer and learners far outweigh those of the employee.” Mbuli went on to note: “From his transgressions that have been proved, the employee cannot be trusted to work in the school environment where there are learners. The employer and learners will suffer severe prejudice if this wrongdoing can be condoned and that discipline has to be applied consistently.” Fani was dismissed with immediate effect and the council's general secretary was ordered to send a copy of the arbitration award to the SA Council of Educators to revoke Fani's certificate. Mbuli also ordered that Fani’s name be entered into the National Child Protection Register.

Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Jeanette Chabalala at SowetanLive


  • ‘Green flags’ to look out for when you're doing a job interview, at IOL News
  • Werkers dalk geraak deur AutoZone se sakereddingsplanne, by Maroela Media
  • Salarisdispuut in Emfuleni lei tot beslaglegging van munisipale voertuie, by Maroela Media
  • Despite increase in national minimum wage, workers suffer as employers forced to reduce work days, at The Witness


Get other news reports at the SA Labour News home page