Nehawu members down tools

National Education Health and Allied Workers’ Union (Nehawu) members yesterday embarked on a nationwide strike.

ON COLLISION COURSE: Nehawu members in the Eastern Cape yesterday joined the nationwide strike following a number of grievances Picture: MICHAEL PINYANA

The union said the strike was a result of the failure of the Department of Social Development to respond to demands it had been making since August 2015.

The union had demanded, among other things, the absorption of unemployed social workers on a permanent basis, the introduction of rural allowances and a specific job description for social work.

Eastern Cape Nehawu secretary Miki Jaceni said the strike had been held in different parts of the province and had affected various units in the health, education and social development departments.

“We can no longer tolerate the arrogance of the department, thus we have resolved to withdraw our labour power in support of our demands,” said Jaceni.

In a statement released last week Nehawu blamed the Minister of Social Development, Bathabile Dlamini, for not taking their demands seriously.

The union said it was evident Dlamini was hell-bent on holding the sector and the country to ransom as a result of her failure to exercise her oversight role.

“Recently, Nehawu had to fight for the survival of the South African Council for Social Service Professions [SACSSP] which was on the brink of collapse under her watch,” the union said in a statement. — simthandilef@dispatch.co.za

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