Strike season began in Jeffreys Bay yesterday as municipal workers marched through the CBD of the once peaceful surf town.
Unfortunately the workers decided to trash the streets around the Municipal building, leaving rubbish, broken glass and cement bins strewn across the CBD.
The strikers are demanding an 18 % wage increase, something municipalities across the country simply cannot afford.
The nation wide strike began slowly with some unions deciding not to begin with the strike in Johannesburg, while icy weather kept strikers off the streets in Kwa Zulu Natal.
The South African Local Government Association (SALGA) , which represents the employers, calls the demand for an 18 percent raise “unreasonable.” It has offered a six percent increase, in line with a previous wage agreement after a 2009 strike.
SALGA says that deal gave workers a 13 percent salary increase in 2009, an eight percent increase in 2010 and a six percent raise for the current year.
Da Gama road was opened to traffic by mid morning yesterday after the South African Police swept the road clear with brooms and the Fire Department extinguished burning tyres.
The Democratic Alliance (DA) has advised residents to avoid the Municipality in the mornings when the strikers picket in front of the building and to try do their business in the afternoons.