Nehawu backs striking Durban university staff as wage talks stall

16 January 2018 - 15:10 By Yasantha Naidoo
DUT staff embarked on protest action on Monday following a breakdown in salary increase negotiations for 2018.
DUT staff embarked on protest action on Monday following a breakdown in salary increase negotiations for 2018.
Image: Times Media

Durban University of Technology staff should not return to work until management concedes to their 10% wage increase demands.

That's the word from the National Education‚ Health and Allied Workers’ Union (Nehawu) as registration at DUT has been hit by delays since Monday.

DUT staff embarked on protest action on Monday following a breakdown in salary increase negotiations for 2018.

DUT spokesman Noxolo Memela said: "The Durban University of Technology had not concluded the 2018 salary negotiations in time for the implementation as of 1 January 2018.

After several meetings‚ the parties met at the CCMA on 15 December 2017‚ where the CCMA issued a strike certificate as the parties had reached a deadlock.

Due to this strike action‚ registration is likely to be affected‚ however‚ DUT management assures its stakeholders that registration continues.

In this context given the industrial action‚ the university would like to encourage students to register online."

But the striking staff have received staunch backing from Nehawu.

In a statement‚ the union said: "As Nehawu‚ we hold a strong view that the university management‚ especially the vice chancellor‚ has been treating workers and their demands with sheer arrogance and total disdain.

The management has been dragging its feet in finalising salary negotiations and this has left the national union with no option but to approach the CCMA for certificate for a strike which began this morning.

"The obstinacy of the university management should be blamed for the disruption of the registration of students through their refusal to expedite the salary negotiations which were meant to be concluded in September 2017."

The union said the they believe that the 4% offered by the university was an "insult" to workers who ensure that the university fulfills its role of providing education and supported the call for 10%.

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