Trade union the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) reports that it has received correspondence from airline operator Comair about the formal withdrawal of its Section 189 notice.
Comair served Numsa with the Section 189 on March 1 as the airline sought to cut salaries by 15% and to reduce the medical aid benefit of its employees.
The union says it objected to the Section 189 notice because workers at Comair have already made “huge sacrifices” to save Comair and “turn it around”.
The union says Comair employees endured more than a year on reduced salaries, cut by as much as 30% and with several benefits being cut.
Numsa says that, in a letter sent by Council for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) employee relations practitioner Barnett Marillier, the CCMA notes that after much deliberation on the issue of Comair’s operational restructuring, and with due consideration of legal advice obtained, the CCMA will seek to explore other avenues of achieving the same saving, which may include the collective bargaining process.
In the CCMA letter, Marillier says Comair and the CCMA will still need to restructure the conditions of employment that places Comair at risk.
“We therefore withdraw the section 189A application . . . and will no longer continue to consult on this issue in this forum,” the Comair letter to Numsa states.