Truck drivers sign wage deal
A wage deal was signed at the road freight bargaining council offices in Johannesburg, ending a three-week long truck driver's strike.
The agreement was announced by the Road Freight Employers' Association after wage talks resumed on Thursday evening.
The strike has been marked by violence which left several truck drivers injured and one dead, and a number of trucks damaged or destroyed.
Earlier this week, three trade unions, jointly claiming to represent 15,000 workers, agreed to adjust their pay demand in an attempt to end a three-week-long strike by thousands of truck drivers. But Satawu, which represents about 28,000 workers in the strike, was not included in that agreement.
Wage talks resumed on Thursday evening, resulting in the new agreement involving all unions.
The Federation of Unions of SA (Fedusa) said it was elated that the end of the strike was in sight.
"While we are mindful of the cost to the economy and the lives lost in this strike, we are convinced that the sector will now rebuild itself to the advantage of the greater South African economy," Fedusa general secretary Dennis George said.
He would appeal to the labour minister to extend the agreement to non-parties in the road freight and logistics sector, to strengthen collective bargaining.
Deal ensures stability
"This is a three-year-deal. This guarantees stability in the industry for a long time to come," Road Freight Bargaining Councilchairman Dave Behrens said.
The deal was staggered over three years and had a 10 percent wage increase in the first year, eight in the second, and nine in the third.
The first wage increase would be implemented on March 1, 2013. The negotiations were facilitated by the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation, and Arbitration.
Road Freight Employers' Association chairman Penwell Lunga said: "We set the trend for other industries and we are going to defend this agreement."