Misunderstanding on Eskom bonuses — Fed up Lakama workers strike

LEPHALALE — Workers of Lakama catering service took a stand against their employer, when they protested outside of Eskom information centre on Monday night for alleged late payments and December bonuses.
“We are never paid on time like other workers, we are paid six to eight days after payday and that is not fair. And each time we raise that matter with our management they tell us that they made us a favour by giving us the job” said one employee whom wished to remain anonymous.
The workers alleged that Eskom had paid Lakama December bonuses to pay their employees but the workers have not seen a cent. They are saying that Lakama had promised to give them their bonuses in December, but each time they must pay they are given excuses.
“Now we are here striking while a bus had come through the night from Mpumalanga to bring in workers to come and take over as we are striking, we have also received SMSs telling us to go back to work. We are tired of Lakama, it must go, so that they can give the tender to a local company, maybe they won’t suffer like we are now. This is not fair” they added.
Mogol Post spoke to Riëtte Venter, Chief Operating Officer at Lakama on Wednesday morning and she said the whole issue could have been avoided if the workers took it up with management in the first place. “It was a misunderstanding in communication between Eskom and the workers. They took part in an illegal strike because they were under the impression that Eskom’s Project Management bonuses should pay out at the end of January instead of the end of February. It was a lack of proper correspondence” she said. Venter said all the workers reported to be back in the kitchen by 22:00 on Tuesday night, ready for their shift. “The strike was over by 15:00 Tuesday and everything was resolved, but we gave them time to rest for the afternoon before the 22:00 shift” she said.
Two people were allegedly injured in this incident.
Lakama provides catering services to major contractors in the Eskom Medupi site.

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