Pretoria – Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality has dismissed 78 employees affiliated to the South African Municipal Workers Union (Samwu) for ill-discipline.
Council spokesperson Zweli Dlamini said the workers’ services were terminated with effect from 8 June following their complete disregard of a management instruction.
In a letter dated 25 February, the municipality informed 95 workers from the Springs Parks depot that they had been placed under suspension pending their submission of representations on why they should not be dismissed.
This was after the workers involved themselves in the strike action that erupted with the dismissal of seven of their shop stewards in February. During the strike action, two municipal trucks were set on fire.
“The municipality had no choice, but to suspend the workers and invite them to make submissions as to why they should not be dismissed because we viewed the incidents that occurred during the strike in a very serious light,” he said.
Several incidents of lawlessness characterised the strike action. Among these were: intimidation and assault of non-striking workers, trashing of streets and the general vandalism of municipal property.
“The municipality also views the participation of the workers in illegal activities during the strike action as a justifiable cause to terminate their employment,” said Dlamini.
According to Dlamini, only 15 of the employees made submissions and the rest disregarded the call.
The letter of dismissal reads: “The municipality notes that you have willfully and deliberately ignored or alternatively refused, by your conduct, to submit the required representations.
“This refusal to make the representations, on two separate occasions, points to your utter disregard for the municipality as your employer.
“The municipality herewith summarily terminates your employment due to your total disregard for your employer and your participation in the activities as enunciated in the letter dated 25 February as well as the status as reflected in the letter dated 5 May.”
Dlamini said the complete disregard of the municipality’s directive is a clear act of severing relations between the employer and employees and a decision had to be taken by management that will at the end of the day benefit the people of Ekurhuleni, who deserve quality services.
“As a metro, we also believe in much disciplined workers and therefore we cannot compromise ourselves by allowing ill-disciplined workers to work for this municipality,” he said. – BuaNews