The South African National Cargo Transport Drivers Association (SANCATDRA) is calling on the National Bargaining Council to deregister all foreign truck drivers. They claim South Africans are being marginalised and that trucking companies prefer foreign drivers who work for cheaper rates.
Members of the association protested outside the offices of the National Bargaining Council in Johannesburg on Tuesday.
About 1 00 members of the SANCATDRA took to the streets of Johannesburg. They marched to the offices of the National Bargaining Council to hand over a memorandum of demands:
They want all foreign truck drivers barred from working in the country.
“Our main call is very simple. We want all the foreign employees who have been employed as truck drivers to be de-registered from the National Bargaining Council road freight so that we can create more space for the employment of the South Africans,” says SANCATDRA president, Dan Mofokeng.
Torching of trucks
More than 30 trucks have been torched in the last few months with most of the incidents occurring in Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal. Mofokeng says the attacks on drivers and the torching of trucks has cost the industry millions of rands.
“We are actually worried about the way things are happening and the way trucks are being burnt and that is a lot of money and it is also giving a bad name to our country and the truck drivers of the country as well. You know, recently we have seen more than 30 trucks being torched and that is a huge loss to the industry and the employers as well and I think the damage will be calculated to millions of rands.”
South African truck drivers, like Gift Mhlongo who has more than 8 years’ experience, say it has been extremely tough to find a job.
“It’s very hard. These days I can’t even get a job. Most of the companies are hiring foreign guys. As for us, South Africans, it’s very hard for us because we have to struggle to get jobs because of this issue of them taking our jobs. Something must be done to sort it out because it’s hard and it’s killing us.”
The association has vowed to intensify their protest action if their demands are not met.
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