South Africa

Massmart workers dropping union for wage offer

Massmart expects more workers at its Makro stores to leave the South African Commercial‚ Catering and Allied Workers’ Union (Saccawu) in order to accept the Walmart-owned company’s wage offer.

About 800, or 17%, of the Makro Saccawu members have resigned from the union, and the firm sees more joining them after receiving “a flurry of calls from Makro staff” asking about the required process to leave the union, Massmart corporate affairs head Brian Leroni said by phone.

A spokesman for the union didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

Wage talks between the Johannesburg-based company and the union collapsed this week, with some workers going on strike on Thursday.

The union is demanding a 12% wage increase and a doubling of sales commission to 20%, while Makro is offering a 4.5% raise, in line with what Massmart’s other units paid.

This is “unrealistic”, and “Makro’s position is that the 2022 wage negotiations are now unfortunately closed,” Leroni said.


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