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Please find below a press release that we issued today after NUMSA’s campaign of misinformation, stating that most locked-out workers has returned to work:

The National Employers’ Association of South Africa (NEASA) is amused by the tactics that the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (NUMSA) resorted in trying to mislead the public by feeding them with misinformation. Now that NUMSA realised that they’ve run out of options to stop the lock-out by NEASA, they are reverting to a campaign of disseminating fabricated information.

Out of sheer embarrassment after withdrawing their urgent application in the Labour Court to stop NEASA’s lock-out of their members, they, in the most ludicrous manner denied that they even brought that application.

Now that the MEIBC’s failed attempt to unconstitutionally call a meeting of the MEIBC did not aid to assist their cause, following NEASA’s urgent application in the Labour Court on 7 August 2014 to stop this meeting from taking place, NUMSA has run out of options and are therefore now reverting to a strategy of misinformation to hide their impotence to deal with this matter.

Their statement therefore that most locked-out workers have returned to work, is simply not true. Having said that, it has always been NEASA’s position that employers participate in the lock-out on a voluntary basis and that employers have to make a business decision when considering whether or not to lock-out trade union members.

‘The number of companies participating in the lock-out is not the point: the essence of this lock-out is that NUMSA and the other unions have the responsibility towards their members, currently locked-out, to resolve NEASA’s outstanding demands in order to get the lock-out lifted. Until this has happened, the lock-out will continue,’ says Gerhard Papenfus, NEASA Chief Executive.

Thus far NUMSA and their allies in the MEIBC have, through all kinds of tactics, tried to find a solution to the lock-out without confronting NEASA’s demands.

‘There is however no alternative other than to negotiate NEASA’s demands with NEASA directly. The problem will not go away and workers will not return to work until NEASA’s demands are sufficiently dealt with,’
Papenfus reiterated.

For more information:

Sya van der Walt-Potgieter
Media Liaison