Emergency services brace for more injuries as transport strike continues

"We, together with Ekurhuleni metro police department, are on high alert for any incidents of violence during the truck drivers' strike," said spokesperson William Ntladi.

He said a truck was stoned by protesters in Kempton Park on Wednesday, but no injuries were reported.

In Germiston, on the M2 and Refinery road, protesters stopped a truck with three occupants.

"The two assistants in the truck driver were hospitalised after being assaulted by the protesters, but the driver managed to escape and opened a case … [with the] police," Ntladi said.The truck was set alight.

About 20 000 workers in the freight transport sector are on strike over wages. Their unions have reverted to a 12% pay demand after rejecting a lower offer tabled by employers on Tuesday.


The Road Freight Employers' Association had proposed a staggered increase of 8.5% effective from March, and a further 0.5% from September next year – resulting in a 9% increase in total.

Protected strike
Workers embarked on a protected strike on Monday after wage negotiations deadlocked.

The four unions involved are the South African Transport and Allied Workers' Union, the Professional Transport and Allied Workers' Union South Africa, the Transport and Allied Workers' Union of South Africa and the Motor Transport Workers' Union. 

Striking truck drivers also set alight vehicles and intimidated a driver in Cape Town and Durban, police said.

A driver and his two assistants were hospitalised after being injured while trying to escape angry protesters.

The driver collided with a car, then hit a tree during the altercation. He sustained serious head wounds, while his two assistants were slightly injured.

In Cape Town, striking truck drivers set alight two trucks in Nyanga.

Investment Solutions economist Chris Hart told the New Age on Thursday South Africa might slip into a second recession if the transport strike was protracted. – Sapa

Subscribe to the M&G

These are unprecedented times, and the role of media to tell and record the story of South Africa as it develops is more important than ever.

The Mail & Guardian is a proud news publisher with roots stretching back 35 years, and we’ve survived right from day one thanks to the support of readers who value fiercely independent journalism that is beholden to no-one. To help us continue for another 35 future years with the same proud values, please consider taking out a subscription.

Sapa
Guest Author

Related stories

Bishop Emeritus Rubin Phillip: The guerilla priest

From his adventures with Steve Biko to his support for shack dwellers in KwaZulu-Natal, Bishop Emeritus Rubin Phillip has always walked the talk of radical Christianity

Teflon ‘convict’ lands another job

Apparently jailed in 2006. Rehired by same municipality in 2008. Charged again in 2015 with corruption. But Melusi Motha denies he was ever in jail

Siza Mzimela appointed acting CEO of struggling SA Express

Current acting SA Express CEO Matsietsi Mokholo will be taking up a new position in the Presidency.

Saftu slams bus bosses threatening to take wage deal to court

Five bus companies have applied for exemption from the wage agreement that put an end to the month-long strike

Bus strike: Unions and bosses back at the bargaining table on Thursday

Five different unions are participating in the strike which started on April 16

Bus strike set to intensify ― unions

'The bus strike is continuing, we are intensifying the action,' Satawu spokesperson Zanele Sabela said
Advertising

Western Cape warned not to be complacent about flat-lining Covid-19...

The Western Cape, which once had the highest number of Covid-19 cases in South Africa, is seeing a steady decline in active cases

Sisulu axes another water board

Umgeni Water’s board in KwaZulu-Natal was appointed irregularly by her predecessor, the water and sanitation minister claims
Advertising

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…

The best local and international journalism

handpicked and in your inbox every weekday