​Ports shut-down looms

29 May 2019 | Web Article Number: ME201914728

Government & Municipal
Harbour Infrastructure & Shipping

THE Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA) is putting in place contingency plans it hopes, will minimise the impact of a country-wide strike by Marine Pilots, Tug Masters and Chief Marine Engineering Officers aimed at shutting down all of the country’s ports from 6am tomorrow, Thursday 30 May, 2019.

The South African Transport and Allied Workers Union (Satawu) said in a statement that it had called the industrial action to protest against the salary discrepancy between black and white mariners working for the TNPA.

Ports due to be affected by the strike include Port Elizabeth, East London, Durban, Richards Bay, Cape Town, Saldanha Bay and Mossel Bay.

“The mariners; skills set is such that its withdrawal will result in a total shutdown at all ports,” said Satawu spokesperson, Zanele Sabela.

But the port authority hopes to ensure this doesn’t happen.

“We have assessed the impact of the strike action and have activated contingency measures though our Business Continuity Plans. We will continuously update our customers and directly engage with them on shipping matters to ensure minimum disruption to port operations,” said TNPA Acting Chief Executive Nozipho Mdawe.

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