NASPAWU to demonstrate at govt offices
MBABANE – Members of the National Public Service and Allied Union (NAPSAWU) have decided to hold demonstrations at government offices.
The decision follows the refusal of permission to march through the streets of the city last Wednesday.
As a result, civil servants are holding pickets at all government branches of the Ministry of Public Service until their demands are met.
Yesterday a handful of picketers participated at yesterday’s demonstration, singing struggle songs outside the Ministry of Public Service.
Vincent Dlamini, Secretary General of NAPSAWU, said while on strike they have seen it important to hold demonstrations and expect no intimidation because they were backed by Section 107 of the Industrial Relations Act, which gives them the mandate to demonstrate at or near their employer’s premises in furtherance of the strike.
Dlamini said demonstrations were meant to exert pressure on government and to inform other workers about the issues being sought, as well as encouraging them to participate.
He said the demands, if met, would benefit every civil servant and therefore they expected everybody to participate in the ‘struggle’. "Some people have the tendency of being spectators and then expect to benefit at the end. We want everybody to participate," the Secretary General said.
He said the strength of the unions was in numbers, which meant the more participants they have, the higher the employer’s likelihood to listen to them.
The Secretary General disputed Minister of Labour and Social Security Lutfo Dlamini’s claim that the strike was illegal, stating that all requirements to engage in the strike had been followed by the workers.
"The strike action is fully legal, which is why government has not challenged it in court. We served government with notice and balloted, where about 98 per cent of the workers voted for the strike action," Dlamini noted.
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