SARS stands by wage offer

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Pretoria - The South African Revenue Services (SARS) says it will not be tabling a revised wage offer after unions rejected the 9 to 11 percent wage settlement offer on Tuesday.

"SARS will not make any further concessions to the current wage offer that was tabled to labour unions the past weekend. SARS considers the [offer] to be reasonable, fair and final," it said in a statement.

The wage settlement is expected to be implemented to non-union members from 11 September and will be backdated to 1 July.

The National Education, Health and Allied Workers Union (Nehawu) rejected the current wage offer on Tuesday, saying that it stood firm on its demand for a 12.8 percent increase.

SARS and unions are scheduled to meet again on Thursday.

Meanwhile, contingency measures to ensure that all offices across the country remain functional and accessible to taxpayers and traders will be strengthened. SARS said it would seek the assistance of other law enforcement agencies to protect non-striking workers and taxpayers at its offices.

"There will be no tolerance for striking workers who attempt to blockade border posts or branch offices, prevent taxpayers and traders from conducting their business with SARS or intimidate non-striking colleagues," it said.

Striking personnel received an SMS message reminding them that the no-work-no-pay-rule will be applied. SARS is also pursueing disciplinary action against staff that may have partaken in acts of intimidation, damage to property and breaking picketing rules.