SAMWU Johannesburg and Tshwane joint statement on issues affecting workers in both cities.

13 April 2022

SAMWU Johannesburg and Tshwane joint statement on issues affecting workers in both cities.

Termination of 130 employees

The City of Johannesburg dismissed 130 employees who were based in political offices. These employees were converted to permanent by the outgone Mayoral Committee. The only sin of this employees was that they were appointed by the ANC Mayoral Committee. It is our belief that that the DA led coalition is playing double standards given the fact that in Tshwane, the DA led Mayoral Committee took a similar decision in appointing 1500 and such employees are still employed by the City of Tshwane

What is also a concern is that those contract employees who were permantized by the former DA Executive Mayor, Councillor Mashaba have not been terminated. This include Jacque Alexander, Shunreka Govender.

Nonpayment of 32 million to SAMWU by City of Johannesburg

The City of Johannesburg collected subscriptions totalling 32 million in favour of SAMWU but to date the money has not been paid over to Union. The said money was said to have been deposited into a suspense account. The union demanded payment of such but only 7 million was left in the account. The Union demands that the of City of Johannesburg pay over the money to the union.

Corruption in both Cities

We have observed a similar pattern of corruption in both Tshwane and Johannesburg. This includes the following amongst others.

In Johannesburg Roads Agency (JRA) forensic investigators uncovered that 400 million has gone missing and no one has been taken through the coals.

In Tshwane forensic investigators discovered that people were not appointed properly and 80 million was used and no one has been taken through the coals.

Tshwane incurred expenses of 5 million on AFC which is not assisting the City. Collection of revenue has now taken a dip because the system is forever offline and passengers enjoy free rides

Non implementation of collective agreements

Benchmarking Collective agreement

The city signed a benchmarking collective agreement which had a clause any worker must be paid a notch (including those on top notch) at a date of his/her anniversary with the City of Tshwane. The City paid that for two years and now they have decided not to honour part of that agreement.

Wage and Salary Collective Agreement

SALGA, SAMWU and IMATU signed a collective agreement in September 2021. The City did not implement until SAMWU applied for enforcement they later applied for exemption. The Bargaining Council ruled in favour of SAMWU but even to date workers have not been paid nor commitment issued to pay.

Grievance outcomes and Awards

It appears that there is a deliberate intention to frustrate SAMWU and its Members gains. A number of grievance outcomes, decisions of Local Labour Forum, Awards and enforcement orders are not implemented by the City of Tshwane. It appears then that there is a clear disregard of bargaining processes.


There are employees who have been on suspensions for more than 12 months and the City is reluctant to bring them back to work.

Outsourcing and duplication of services leading to wasteful expenditure

The City of Tshwane has well established and capacitated departments to render services but continue to use contracting services which cost 15% of the City budget. We have continuously used and paid private companies R573 million in 2020/2021 financial year. This were expenses from outsourced activities: Business advisory (479,8million) Consultants’ fees (1,2 million) Legal costs (77,8 million) Traffic control fees (14,9 million).

Finance department

The City of Tshwane appointed 30 debt collection firms to assist with revenue collection but failed. The debtors book has since increased by 2 billion. Of concern to SAMWU is that the City had insourced more than 700 Revenue Agents in 2019 for the same process. Tshwane raised 500 million in two weeks during Tshwane Ya Tima campaign in which internal capacity was utilized. The City has therefore proved that it has sufficient internal capacity to generate revenue, and it would no longer need the services of private companies, who had failed. It is now a serious concern that the same debt collection firms wants to be paid for monies collected.

Legal department

The City has a fully-fledged Group Legal and Secretariat Services with a total staff complement of approximately 200 employees. Amongst these employees are admitted attorneys and advocates. It is therefore unthinkable that the City is spending almost 100 million on outsourced legal services even though it who have a right of appearance in court. Some of these external attorneys attend conciliation meetings and disciplinary hearings. Employees in the legal department have now been turned to attorneys whose work is to brief external attorneys.

Waste management

Court has recently ruled that the fleet contract was awarded unlawfully and the process must be restarted. SAMWU has had many engagements with the City that some of the contracts they awarding are not necessary or alternatively must be to add into the City capacity. We engaged the Executive Mayor and his office that there are closed to 150 truck drivers and operators who report for duty but are not given work. City trucks are parked at depots due to tyre punctures, expired discs or flat batteries. Instead of the City fixing this things they resort to appointing private companies to do collection of waste.

Grass Cutting

The City is utilizing private companies for grass cutting when there are employees appointed for that purpose. In some instances, they also rent equipment that they could have easily bought. For example, the City will opt to rent a brush cutter for R 3 000 a month whereas a brush cutter cost almost same amount if you buy.

Capturing of the City by rightwing elements

In Tshwane SAMWU has noted with concern an intention by the Executive to sign a memorandum of understanding with AfriForum. It appears that AfriForum was given assurance that memorandum will be signed hence they started availing themselves for certain deployments by the City. There was also an intention to hand over municipal pound to be managed by them. The MMC for Community Services confiscated all the books there in preparation for that process

Political interference on Administration

DA leadership in both Tshwane and Johannesburg are interfering in the administration

In Johannesburg, administration has been told to change face of employees at Thuso house. Instruction was that since whites are the ones paying services, customer care centres must be managed by whites and not blacks

In Tshwane the Executive Mayor gave an instruction that Metro Police structure be changed, and reporting lines be changed. This instruction was in writing an labour was not consulted.

Union Bashing and attack on leadership

SAMWU is under attack in both the City of Johannesburg and City of Tshwane. The union and its leadership are constantly under attack by both employers.

In Johannesburg SAMWU was denied permission to march on two occasions.

In Tshwane the Union was also denied permission to March and Shopstewards were also denied Time Offs
The Executive Mayor in Tshwane is driving a narrative that characterize SAMWU as sabotaging service delivery. Whoever is seen marching in the City wearing red is said to be a SAMWU member

Power Stations

City of Tshwane has two power stations in Rooiwal and Pretoria West, which have the capacity of generating approximately 400 megawatts. The two power stations can provide more than 70% of the City’s electricity needs. If the City utilizes these power stations properly, the City can generate more than enough revenue to take care of some of its challenges. It cannot be correct that as and when we experience load shedding and reduction, power stations are not running because of shortage of oil and coal.

Nonobservance of OHS

Both employers in Johannesburg and Tshwane are not providing protective clothing and safety to employees. Both employers have blood in their hands.

5 Security guards were killed at Pikit UP and situation has not improved.
Security guards protecting electricity are made to protect this serious assets without guns. Two have been killed and one injured to date.

Electricity technicians are attacked on daily basis at when responding to service delivery challenges in Soshanguve
Tshwane Insourced security officers have not been provided with uniform nor tools of trade like guns
Recently all cashiers refused to work until they were provided with chairs

Tshwane Regional Secretary
Mpho Tladinyane
083 941 5888

Petrus Mashishi (Johannesburg) Acting regional Secretary
Thobani Nkosi
066 290 2134