Photo by Gallo Images/Charles Gallo

NUM vows to sign final Eskom wage agreement if no staff are disciplined

The Eskom saga might finally be over as one major union has agreed to sign off once and for all. There is one condition, though.


Photo by Gallo Images/Charles Gallo

Eskom is arguably the best-known victim of state capture. While the power utility was meant to be looking ahead regarding the country’s electricity, the previous board members and management allowed the Guptas to decimate it.

The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) has resolved to sign Eskom’s proposed three-year wage agreement. The catch? It will only sign if the power utility promises to not discipline employees that partook in the strike or protest action.

In an emailed statement, NUM President Joseph Montisetse said the union is “ready to sign the deal anytime”.

“On the issue of taking disciplinary action against our members, we are saying the matter could be resolved outside the bargaining unit. The NUM wants to make it clear that it is against any move to dismiss any worker,” it said.

Eskom’s latest offer will see workers getting salary increases of 7.5% in 2018-19 and 7& in 2019-20 and 2020-21

Over the course of the last few months, Eskom has been forced to implement small bouts of load shedding as some protesting workers deliberately sabotaged equipment or blocked coal trucks from making deliveries.

At one point, newly appointed Eskom CEO Phakamani Hadebe had to be escorted away by police after attempting to address striking workers went wrong. Workers moved towards Hadebe to address him when someone hurled a plastic bottle in his direction.

Thursday also revealed some worrying news about Eskom’s fellow state entity Transnet. A new investigation has revealed how Gupta front managed to secure R600m in their back pockets.

In the new report, records show that Regiments Capital passed “more than half’ of its consulting fees from Transnet, SAA and Denel contracts to Essa and Gupta fronts.

Read: New report reveals how company passed R600m to Gupta fronts

It all seemed to start in 2013 as Regiments Capital managed to begin working with Transnet. Fast forward by 12 months and the firm was suddenly raking in annual R400m consulting fees.