Numsa to meet with workers after labour court interdicts ArcelorMittal strike

The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) said it will be meeting with its members after the Labour Court in Johannesburg interdicted its strike at ArcelorMittal.

Thousands of workers affiliated to the union were due to embark on a strike against the steel producer this week after serving the company with a 48-hour notice.

Workers are demanding a 10% wage increase across the board, a housing allowance, 80% medical aid contribution of the employer, and to scrap the labour brokers and insourcing of temporary employees.

The ArcelorMittal board offered an increase of 5% across the board and also offered workers 2% of their salaries in cash as a monthly amount.

The union rejected the proposal.

In a statement, Numsa spokesperson Phakamile Hlubi-Majola said the union has taken note of the Labour Court’s decision to interdict the strike.

“The court application was brought by ArcelorMittal South Africa to block workers in Blast furnaces, Coke Batteries and the Steel Plant from participating in the strike.

“AMSA made the application to the labour court on the basis that an application to possibly declare some aspects of its business as “essential services” are pending before the CCMA Essential Services Committee (ESC).  

“The ESC is due to make a determination on whether these aspects of the AMSA business are to be declared ‘essential services’. This matter is still before the ESC and a decision has not yet been made,” Hlubi-Majola said.

Hlubi-Majola said the interdict does not bar all workers from embarking on the strike.

“Justice Mahosi of the Labour court interdicted the strike temporarily but only for workers in the Blast Furnaces, Coke Batteries and the Steel Plant, until a final judgment has been made.

“This means that only workers in these departments are unable to participate in the strike but all other workers can participate.”

Hlubi-Majola said most members in the affected divisions are not aware of the interdict and it will be consulting with them on the way forward.

“We will then communicate with the company after concluding consultation with our members,” Hlubi-Majola said.

ALSO READ: Numsa to strike after wage negotiations with ArcelorMittal South Africa stall

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