Striking South African truck drivers reject new wage offer

09:35, February 17, 2011      

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Striking South African truck drivers, who have been disrupting Johannesburg's central business district since Monday, on Wednesday evening rejected a revised eight percent wage offer from the Road Freight Employers Association (RFEA).

Earlier the employers had offered a 7.5 percent increase. The truckers are a demanding 20 percent over two years, 10 percent in 2011 and again in 2012.

Zenzo Mahlangu of the South African Transport and Allied Workers' Union (Satawu) told the South African Press Association (SAPA) that the increased offer is "ridiculous" .

"We are not on strike for just 0.5, we will not accept it."

Earlier on Wednesday Statistics South Africa said the country' s consumer price inflation rate for January 2011 was 3.7 percent. Mahlangu said negotiations with the employer body would continue into the night.

"I hope they will shift with upward figures soon... otherwise we won't stop striking," said Mahlangu.

The strike by about 65,000 workers entered its third day on Wednesday.

On Wednesday union members marched through central Johannesburg and delivered a memorandum to the RFEA.

South African Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa warned protestors that acts of intimidation and violence would not be tolerated. South African media reported several of acts of intimidation and the destruction of property allegedly by striking truck drivers.

Source: Xinhua

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