The Satawu strike began this morning at ACSA airports countrywide. No disruptions to flights and other airport operations were experienced. Contingency measures have been effected and will remain in place for the duration of the strike. No major disruptions are therefore expected during this period.
The contingency measures were applied at Johannesburg, Cape Town, George, Kimberley, Pilanesberg and Bloemfontein. Indications at this stage are that between 25 and 30 percent of Satawu members participated in the strike action.
In terms of the Picketing and Strike Rules agreement entered into between ACSA and Satawu in accordance with section 69 of the Labour Relations Act of 1995, Satawu must submit a seven day written notice to ACSA of its intention to picket.
This notice was served on Thursday, 23 October 2003, meaning picketing could only start on Thursday, 30 October 2003. However, at some airports Satawu members commenced with demonstrations this morning in contravention of the Picketing Agreement. ACSA reserves its rights in this regard.
The agreement also identifies designated areas where demonstrations can be held and regulates the conduct of the demonstrators.
The following conduct is expected from demonstrators:
1. That they not interfere with the Constitutional rights and operational activities of others, customers or service providers within airport premises;
2. That they not physically prevent members of the public, including customers, other employees or service providers from gaining access to or leaving ACSA’s premises;
3. That they conduct themselves in a peaceful, unarmed and lawful manner.
This is over and above complying with requirements of other legislation, particularly the National Key Point Act (NKPA). The Act, which is applicable to the three major international airports, essentially makes provision for possible intervention by a statutory body, the NKPA Secretariat. –ENDS-