South African truck drivers go on strike

South African truck drivers are now officially on strike, according to radio station RSG. Over the long weekend the were threatening to go on strike after several months of failed salary negotiations with employers, the main transport workers’ union said Sunday.

The South African Transport and Allied Workers’ Union (Satawu) has given notice of plans to strike from Monday, though because there was a public holiday the stayaway would not take effect until Tuesday, a spokesman said.

“There is currently a recommended offer by the employers that we are considering, but we hope to check with our membership…. We are going to contact our members on Tuesday morning,” the union’s Vincent Masoga told AFP.

Masoga said truckers are seeking a 12-percent increase for 2013 and 2014. He refused to say how much the employers’ association is offering, but local broadcaster Talk 702 put the figure at eight percent.

South Africa’s central bank has forecast inflation will hold steady at around five percent through 2014.

The Road Freight Association of transport employers was not immediately available for comment.

A strike could disrupt retail and fuel supply chains in the country, which was swept by violent strikes in its crucial mining sector in recent weeks. – Sapa and RSG