South African Teachers on a Previous Demonstration
Members of the largest South African teachers' union SADTU may be balloted shortly on strike action
Talks with the government aimed at settling the dispute have ground to a halt and the leaders of SADTU say they may have no alternative but to ballot their members for a strike.
Following the resolution of the public service workers' dispute in 2007 the Occupation Specific Dispensation was set up and the salary level for teachers was due to be finalised at the beginning of this month. The unions have agreed to give the government a little longer to come up with the necessary money to fund the pay rise of 15% in line with the demands of other public sector workers. The government claims there is no money in the budget to settle the teachers' dispute. Yet South Africa is a rich country with abundant natural resources - it is the world's largest producer of platinum and gold. Meanwhile uneployment is over 20% and average life expectancy only 53. As in many other parts of the world there is a vast disparity between rich and poor.
To read SADTU's statement on the latest dispute go to: http://www.sadtu.org.za/sadtu-documents/press-statements