South Africa, Pretoria – Members of the National Union of Public Service and Allied Workers yesterday marched to government departments in Pretoria, demanding improved wages and the permanent absorption of contract workers.
The march started in Marabastad and stopped at the departments of Transport, Public Works and Infrastructure, Basic Education and the Treasury.
The union planned for the march to be a three-day camp at Church Square, to convince the government to implement the public servants’ wage agreement and absorb Expanded Public Works Programme, community health workers and care-givers.
At the Department of Basic Education, they submitted a memorandum demanding that Minister Angie Motshekga integrated early childhood development practitioners by migrating them from the Department of Social Development, as announced by President Cyril Ramaphosa.
National convenor of the union Solly Malema said they wanted the government to know that it was about time they ended the “exploitative” programmes that kept people employed on contracts for many years while they earn meager stipends of about R3 500.
He said they wanted Minister of Finance Tito Mboweni to make the Cabinet aware that South African workers were up in arms and demanding that the government heed their demands before they headed to their various departments to stage sit-ins.
The union’s demands include the filling up of all vacant posts within the public service, and the permanent employment of all community health workers in the country on salary level 2 as an interim solution to the demand of salary level 5; and the integration of community caregivers into the Department of Social Development on salary level 2 as an interim solution to the demand of salary level 5.