Eskom plans to take action against workers who went on strike at its various power stations and essentially contributing to the current power crisis the embattled power utility finds itself in. Eskom has been struggling to keep the lights up, even ramping up load shedding to stage 6, something it attributed to the industrial action.
Eskom CEO Andre De Ruyter has warned that if workers continue their strike, the electricity problem will worsen, meaning South Africans will be placed in a precarious situation.
Staff at the power utility are on strike over wages and unions representing them have met management where a new offer was tabled. For now stage 2 load shedding will be implemented for the weekend.
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ESKOM STAFF COULD FACE CRIMINAL CHARGES
Andre De Ruyter has said that 90% of workers at three Eskom power plants are still absent and that load shedding will only be lifted once staff return to their posts.
De Ruyter has further warned that some workers could face criminal charges, amid claims of sabotage and violence.
“But we will be taking disciplinary action against workers that have stayed away unlawfully, that may include the application of the principle of no work no pay. Where there were acts of intimidation and violence the Eskom disciplinary code will apply and we will process various investigations accordingly and where there are criminal acts, these will be reported to the SA Police Service,”Eskom CEO Andre De Ruyter
At the same time, the National Union of Mineworkers’ general secretary William Mabapa says they have reached a consensus with the parastatal on some items, but adds there are some issues that remain unresolved and require further consideration.
“Eskom has presented an offer but on the offer that Eskom has presented there are five items, and in principle, there are two areas that we think we are moving along, and there are three areas that Eskom is taking a caucus to discuss so that they can respond to us. If after the caucus those issues that we’ve raised will be responded to in a positive manner, we will see huge progress that will give us something we can go back to the workers and get a mandate on the way forward,” Mabapa said.