The Fuel Retailers Association and RMI are again consulting their members to avoid a strike in the motor retail sector after Numsa claimed the two parties reneged on an earlier wage agreement.

The Fuel Retailers Association and RMI (Retail Motor Industry organisation) are again consulting their members to avoid a strike in the motor retail sector after Numsa (National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa) claimed the two parties reneged on an earlier wage agreement.

The strike was initially scheduled last month for Wednesday, but has since been shifted to September 10, the union said. If the strike by the 180 000 Numsa members were to go ahead, it would halt operations at petrol stations, vehicle component manufacturers, panel beaters and vehicle dealerships.

On Wednesday, Numsa spokesman Dumisa Ntuli told CARtoday that the RMI and fuel retailers were currently consulting with its members in its various constituencies. Ntuli said they would be reporting back to Numsa before September 10.

Ntuli earlier said the RMI had reneged on its earlier proposals, when it refused to include an “agency shop clause” for the payment of non-union members union services.

But Jakkie Olivier of the RMI disputed this saying the clause was not included in the in-principle agreement with Numsa.

Last month the RMI and Numsa had agreed to a new wage agreement in principle, when the employers had offered a new wage proposal. The RMI offered a 7,5 per cent pay increase for all its workers and the parties were due to sign the agreement after consulting with their principals. At the time, Ntuli said unless Numsa’s members made a decision on the new offer, the strike would go ahead as planned.

Numsa is now demanding a ten and 12 per cent increase for different graded workers, while other demands include a R10 per hour minimum rate, night and afternoon shift allowances, a 40-hour week and free transport for late workers.