MyCiTi bus drivers are threatened with continuing to strike

Commuters will probably have to make alternative transport arrangements on Tuesday due to disruptions to the MyCiTi bus service as a result of a strike by drivers on Monday.

The mayor-member of the city for transport and urban development, Brett Herron, said "in the afternoon" it is unclear for how long the illegal attack continues and when the MyCiTi service will be able to resume normal operations " .

However, notable MyCiTi bus drivers have vowed to extend their strike to Tuesday as their grievances are not addressed by the city of Cape Town, News24 reported.

"We are here because we are exposed to unfair labor practices in this structure of the MyCiTi project," says Patrick Mabindisa, a bus driver and one of the leaders of the protest.

"The city does not control under what conditions we work, the pressure is enormous."

Some of the bus drivers employed by the vehicle companies (VOCs) operating the MyCiTi bus routes started an illegal attack.

"As a result, the MyCiTi service has been severely disrupted with a few routes that operate during the morning peak period, neither the VOCs nor the City of Cape Town were informed of the upcoming strike and the reasons for the illegal residence. "Herron said.

Hertzog Boulevard was closed on Monday morning for inbound traffic after around 200 striking drivers gathered on the red bus lane outside the Civic Center station and intimidated bus drivers who fulfilled their duties.

Traffic and MyCiTi buses running on the Mitchell Plain and Khayelitsha N2 Express routes were diverted on other routes.

"I'm worried about the illegal strike and its impact on commuters who are already busy because of the ailing train connection.

"I was also aware of incidents where some strikers intimidated their colleagues who did not participate in their illegal attack." This is unacceptable, I urge the VOC & # 39; s and their employees to meet as soon as possible, "said Herron, who still has to meet the disappointed MyCiTi employees.

"These assignments must be facilitated through the right channels so that the impasse can be resolved and we need the MyCiTi service to resume operations as quickly as possible and without interruptions."

But Mabindisa told News24 that attempts to use the right channels have been exhausted. MyCiTi drivers met with Mayor of Cape Town, Patricia de Lille, on 7 April, but nothing came of it.

We need Brett Herron to come here and he has to answer these problems today, he has to take this very seriously, & # 39; said Mabindisa.

If their concerns were not addressed by the city of Cape Town, he said, the workers would "have to escalate this illegal strike" and encouraged workers in the taxi industry to join them.

The peaceful protest was received in the early afternoon by a strong police contingent. At least ten stun grenades exploded just after thirteen in the circle at Adderley Street and Hans Strijdom Avenue.

"We just sang, we did not do anything, this is a peaceful protest and the police threw tear gas at us," said one of the demonstrators.

Demonstrators claimed poor working conditions were an important reason for the strike action. "We are exposed to unsafe buses," said Mabindisa.

The demonstrators said they hoped that their pleas for safer working conditions, a less stressful work environment and better pay were heard by the authorities.

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