Tongaat Hullet workers vow to continue job action

via Tongaat Hullet workers vow to continue job action | The Herald December 15, 2015

Striking Tongaat Hulett workers yesterday vowed to continue with their job action until their demands for a wage increment are met. The 16 000 workers went on strike on November 27, demanding a wage adjustment to $300 from about $170 in line with what other Tongaat Hulett employees in the region are earning. Tongaat Hulett has other subsidiaries in Swaziland, South Africa and Mozambique.

In a statement, Zimbabwe Sugar Milling Industry Workers Union president Freedom Madhungwe accused Tongaat Hulett of “disregarding” workers’ plight.

“All the legal channels up to Supreme Court have ruled in favour of the workers. The employer is demanding stoppage to the collective job action before they start negotiating, which is tantamount to disregarding the Supreme Court ruling,” he said.

Madhungwe said workers are querying why they are earning lower than their counterparts in the region. The workers want to make it clear to the nation that they are ready to resume work once an acceptable wage, in line with (the salaries of) other Tongaat Hulett subsidiaries in the region. The workers are asking for a wage adjustment to $300 as compared to 6 000 rand in South Africa,” he said.

Tongaat Hulett has said that engagement efforts with the striking workers are underway. “Tongaat Hulett reaffirms its commitment to ensuring a mutually beneficial and positive outcome from the engagement process,” said the company’s corporate affairs and communications manager Adelaide Chikunguru.

Tongaat Hulett Zimbabwe sugar operations consist of Triangle and a 50,3 percent stake in Hippo Valley Estates, representing a combined sugar milling capacity of more than 640 000 tonnes. — New Ziana.