Samwu threatens strike if eThekwini police head's not fired
"We will picket outside the City Hall on Friday between 11am and 2pm," Samwu regional deputy secretary Nkosenhle Madlala said on Wednesday.
Madlala said the union held a meeting at the hall on Wednesday. Officers would report for work on Friday, but would not be at their posts between 11am and 2pm.
"We are in the process of getting permission from the police to hold the picket."
In June, city manager S'bu Sithole announced Nzama was put on special leave for three months while the allegations against him by the union and taxi drivers were investigated. He was replaced by the city's disaster management head, Vincent Ngubane.
Nzama approached the Durban Labour Court to challenge his special leave and resumed his duties in July.
In May, taxi drivers went on a violent strike, claiming the eThekwini metro officers were unfairly targeting them.
'Serious security concerns'
Sithole said another reason for the special leave was to give the city time to assess what had caused the "instability" under Nzama's leadership.
"The third reason relates to serious security concerns against Mr Nzama, which have come to our attention. We believe as a city that we should take appropriate steps to protect him as our employee."
Sithole did not say what these security concerns were.
Madlala said: "When Ngubane was in charge he addressed a lot of our grievances and the general feeling is that all the progress he has made might come to an end."
Ngubane was willing to hold talks with the union, Madlala said.
In the time Ngubane acted as head, he sent about 59 officers for training. He also agreed with the union that the transfer of staff should take place within guidelines, and identified a lack of leadership.
"The metro police needs a deputy head of operations, 10 captains, and four superintendents. Those positions are critical to the operations of the unit," Madlala said.
"There was a commitment from Ngubane to assist members who didn't meet the requirement to go to training and become fully-fledged officers."
No complaint laid
Madlala said the union had not had any formal communication with Sithole yet.
Municipal spokesperson Thabo Mofokeng said the city would deal with the matter on Wednesday as it had not received any communication from the unions.
"Once we receive a complaint, then we can deal with it and understand their concerns."
Mofokeng said metro police were part of the police force and thus an essential service.
"I do not want to speculate as to what will happen if they go on strike," he said. – Sapa