South African road strikes come to a close

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South African road strikes come to a close

The South African Transport and Allied Workers Union (Satawu) has finally reached a deal with the Road Freight Employers Association (RFEA) and has called off strikes.

The association's executive officer Margretia Brown-Engelbrecht released a statement highlighting workers were expected to return to duty with immediate effect.

"After a total of 19 days of strike action and over four months of negotiations, parties finally managed to settle the dispute with a three-year deal, which will be implemented on 1 March 2013, subject to the Minister of Labour promulgating and extending same to non-parties," she said.

"The three-year deal does however come at a premium, but we believe that under the circumstances and in the long-term it is the best possible agreement. The Across the Board (ATB) wage increase has been agreed to at 10% for 2013, 8% + 0.25% six months later in 2014 and 9% in 2015. The total package cost calculates to an average of 8.7% per annum.

"The RFEA hopes that the successful conclusion of these negotiations contributes to the strengthening of the Rand and the recovery of the South African economy."

Brown-Engelbrecht extended sympathies to the victims and families who have sufered from the effects of intimidation and violence during the strike.

"We are hopeful that the trucking companies that have suffered severe losses are able to resume their business operations and continue serving the South African public."

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