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SHOW US WHERE TO GET YOUR MONEY, GOVT TELLS UNIONS

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MBABANE – Show us the money. This was a statement allegedly made by the Government Negotiation Team (GNT) that did not sit well with public sector associations (PSAs) during the Joint Negotiation Forum (JNF) talks held yesterday at the Ministry of Public Service.


The PSAs are formed by the Swaziland National Association of Teachers (SNAT), National Public Service and Allied Workers Union (NAPSAWU), the Swaziland Democratic Nurses Union (SWADNU), and the Swaziland National Association of Government Accounting Personnel (SNAGAP).


According to SNAT President Freedom Dlamini, yesterday’s negotiations bore no fruits as government failed to table a better offer to civil servants.
Government and its workers are currently engaged in cost of living adjustment talks where PSAs are demanding 9.15 per cent while government is offering 0.0 per cent.


Briefing the about 500 teachers and students who were singing and chanting outside the ministry’s gates, Dlamini expressed shock when the GNT asked PSAs to show them where the money they were demanding was, so that they could give it to them. What further troubled the PSAs was, that even yesterday, government refused to sign the deadlock agreement but insisted on another meeting next week.
“When we got to the negotiation room, we were asked to state where the money is,” Dlamini said.


He interpreted this as government being reckless as it knew about the negotiations but failed to budget for them.
This led the PSAs to presume that the negotiations were just a waste of time and in actual fact, a deadlock was premeditated by government. Dlamini opined that the deadlock was there even before the jnf started talks and added that it was crafted by government.


The SNAT president said what teachers needed to understand was what the government stood to benefit from the prevailing situation. To PSA leaders, he said this meant that they needed to make all necessary arrangements to have all civil servants join the teachers as they accompany them to next week’s meeting with the GNT.

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