NSFAS employees affiliated to NEHAWU to embark on nationwide strike
Employees of the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) affiliated to the National Education‚ Health and Allied Workers’ Union (Nehawu) are to embark on a nationwide strike following two years of unsuccessful negotiations with the scheme.
The union’s spokesperson Khaya Xaba said they will on Monday apply for a certificate to go on strike at the Commission for Conciliation Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA).
“Among our demands is the issue of the 13th cheque‚ which the company only pays from employees on level 13 and above. Those below get 13th cheques from their savings. We want the employer to apply the same principle to all employees‚” Xaba said.
The workers‚ according to Xaba‚ are also demanding medical aid and the absorption of employees on fixed-term contracts as permanent staff.
Xaba said the union had been engaging NSFAS in negotiations for the past two years‚ but those have not yielded any positive results.
He said it was a “pure coincidence” that the union was embarking on a strike at a time when institutions of higher learning are busy with student registrations and when the scheme has to deal with funding issues.
“This is purely by coincidence. It was not intentional‚” Xaba said.
NSFAS spokesperson Kagisho Mamabolo said about the planned strike: “We are aware of the strike and we note it. We are still engaging with the union.”