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SAPS officials, cleaners man call centre


South African Police Union (Sapu) members embark on a strike for sitting 12-hour shifts on broken chairs

MORE PAY: Police officers and cleaners are apparently manning the SAPS call centre while SAPU union members are striking for higher salaries . Picture: Soraya Crowie

POLICE officials and cleaners have apparently been called in to man the SAPS 10111 call centre at Kimberley police station after South African Police Union (Sapu) members embarked on a salary strike.

The union members complained that they were made to sit 12-hour shifts on broken chairs.

“This is an emergency centre that receives all the calls for all the police stations in the city as well as the ambulance and fire station. We have been on strike since July and our salaries were frozen as from (today) yesterday. Our backs are sore and our medical aid has run out for the year.

“Today (yesterday) we were prevented from entering the building, where 32 call operators are employed. We have remained on the same salary level since we started working here and we are only requesting one notch increase.”

They stated that the call centre was the only one being paid according to the old salary scales. “Home Affairs and the South African Social Security Agency have been upgraded to the new salary level.”

Sapu chairperson, Lorraine Moaposa, said that there were 1 114 vacant level 7 posts at the call centre.

“The police officials and cleaners who have been roped in to operate the phones at the call centre are being paid overtime, so there must be money in the budget for better salaries.”

Police spokesperson, Brigadier Mohale Ramatseba, stated that the SAPS call centre in Kimberley was operating normally and members were reporting for duty.

“Contingency plans have been put in place by the management of the SAPS in the Province in order to ensure that service delivery to the community is not affected.”

He added that the SAPU strike had been called nationally by the union.