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Sars strike ends after Nehawu agrees to sign wage agreement

02 April 2019 - 16:04 By Ernest Mabuza
The strike at Sars has finally come to an end.
The strike at Sars has finally come to an end.
Image: Sars website

The strike at the revenue service Sars has come to an end after the National Education and Allied Workers' Union (Nehawu) undertook to sign a multi-year wage agreement on Tuesday.

This follows the signing of the wage agreement by the Public Servants' Association (PSA) on Monday.

In terms of the agreement, employees will receive a salary increase of 8% from April 1 this year. They will also get increases of projected CPI (inflation) plus 2%, effective from April 1 2020 and April 1 2021.

The long-service award amounts will increase annually by the same percentage as the  salary. Workers will also be entitled to eight days of pre-natal and vaccination leave and five days of family responsibility leave in a two-year leave cycle.

Nehawu, however, said  it was not entirely happy with the multi-year agreement. The union maintains that a single-term agreement would have been more suitable to its members under the current economic conditions.

"In this regard, we shall continue to monitor its implementation and where necessary the union shall consider all possibilities to reopen the negotiations," said the union.

Nehawu said it would continue to fight for the resolution of outstanding issues, which include: 

  • the finalisation of the pay progression policy;
  • an affordable housing scheme for Sars employees;
  • an affordable medical scheme; and
  • grade anomalies.

"It must be noted that during negotiations we have compromised a lot ... reducing our initial demand of 15% to 11.4%, while the employer barely made any concessions," said Nehawu.

The union said it was regrettable that the PSA signed the draft settlement agreement prematurely while negotiations were still ongoing.