The country’s largest financial union is planning a major strike to take place at the end of this month. Tools will be downed as Sasbo members prepare to protest over planned retrenchments in the banking sector.
Sasbo – or the South African Society of Bank Officials – is 73 000 members strong, and wants banks to consider alternative options to retrenchments, such as re-skilling employees whose jobs are at risk. “If the banks say no, the struggle continues and we will make sure we shut down the system until they come to their senses,” Sasbo Secretary-General Joe Kokela says to BusinessTech. “We can even make sure replenishment of ATMs are kept to a minimum so that the country runs short of money.”
As reported by eNCA, the strike has the support of Cosatu, who have warned that the strike will just be a “warm up” exercise.
“All Cosatu-affiliated unions will mobilise to ensure that the Sasbo banking sector strike on 27 September is successful,” Cosatu Deputy General-Secretary Solly Phetoe. “This strike will be part of a build-up to the 7 October full-blown national strike.”
Absa, Standard Bank, and Nedbank Group have all consulted with staff about cuts in recent months.
Absa is restructuring operations across its business units, Standard Bank is closing 91 branches, while Nedbank is in talks with about 1,500 employees over job cuts or redeployments.