CoW contract workers hold peaceful demonstration

City of Windhoek (CoW) contract workers held a demonstration here on Thursday, over delayed salary and wage negotiations for the financial year 2019/2020.

The employees marched from the Agostinho Neto traffic circle in the central business district to the CoW Head Office where they handed a petition to CoW Deputy Mayor, Loide Kaiyamo on behalf of the Mayor.

Delivery the petition on behalf of the aggrieved employees, workers representative Kambatjiuko Kandorozu noted that from 7 February the Namibia Public Workers Union (NAPWU) submitted the salary and wage proposal to the CoW as well as reminding CoW management to respond to the submitted made.

He further stated that CoW wrote to the union on several occasion informing then that they were still in the process of obtaining a mandate from the council before the dates of negotiations are communicated.

'The CoW informed the union through a letter dated 21 May 2019 that they need to procure some crucial information and as result do not foresee to conclude the process of negotiation and obtain a mandate before end May,' explained Kandorozu.

According to Kandorozu the CoW once again responded that they were waiting for the Ministry of Urban and Rural Development to approve the Capital Expenditure budget that also includes salary and wages, and only after that approval of the budget will they submit an item to the council for a mandate to negotiate.

He further mentioned that the came to unbelievably realize that CoW actually never sought a mandate from the council as stated above.

'Our demands are that salary and wage negotiations should immediately start and be finalised before end of September 2019, employees be paid retrospectively as from from 01 July 2019 and to be resolved as soon as possible and for the current wage to be reviewed,' said Kandorozu.

The CoW 14 working days from the date to start with the aforesaid negotiations and finalize the fixed-term contract issue as a matter of urgency.

In response, Kaiyamo said they will study the petition and revert back them through their representative in the given period.

Source: Namibia Press Agency