Strike action at ICASA over salary standoff
The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA) says its operations have not been affected by the strike action initiated today by members of the National Education, Health and Allied Workers' Union (Nehawu).
Yesterday, TimesLIVE reported the Nehawu branch at ICASA said its workers will go on strike from Wednesday after failing to reach an agreement over wage increases.
According to the publication, the union served ICASA with a notice to strike last Monday.
The dispute between the telecoms regulator and the labour body stems from failing to reach an agreement over salary increases for the 2023/24 financial year.
While ICASA is offering a 4.4% salary increase, Nehawu is demanding an 8% hike, and the union has embarked on the industrial action amid the impasse.
In a statement to ITWeb, the regulator says: “The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa wishes to inform its stakeholders that the head office and regional offices remain open for regular business operations despite the industrial action by members of the National Education, Health and Allied Workers’ Union.”
ICASA says it has taken the necessary measures to ensure business continuity and uninterrupted service to its customers, licensees and other stakeholders.
“We want to assure all our stakeholders that ICASA remains resolute in ensuring uninterrupted operations,” says Tshiamo Maluleka-Disemelo, ICASA CEO.
“We empathise with our employees and continue to engage in what we hope will be a productive dialogue to reach a reasonable resolution within the limits of our resources.”
Nehawu spokesperson Lwazi Nkolonzi tells ITWeb via e-mail that the job action was as a result of the collapse of wage negotiations.
“Nehawu served ICASA with a strike notice last week Monday and today the strike commenced at ICASA,” he confirms.
According to Nkolonzi, Nehawu is the only union at ICASA, representing over 200 members of the 300-strong workforce.
“We want the employer to meet the demands placed by our members at the negotiations, which include, among others, an 8% salary increment across the board.
“We have been engaged with the employer since the beginning of the negotiations and the employer has [been] arrogant towards the union. They have been arrogant and totally disregarded our demands,” Nkolonzi concludes.