Management of Johannesburg City Parks has made it clear that any of its employees who continues with the strike action and does not return to work on Monday morning could face disciplinary action.
The Joburg zoo shut the gates on visitors on Friday morning after their workers abandoned their duty posts and went on strike over what was later understood to be a wage dispute.
City Parks revealed that they got more than 300 volunteers that were willing to offer their assistance just to make sure that zoo remains open to the public and operational over the weekend.
City Parks’ spokesperson Jenny Moodley said, “We understand that employees have every right to voice their concern however, there are critical services that need to be rolled out at the zoo. We need our employees to regroup and recommit to make sure they are at work on Monday morning.”
Due to the insecurity created by the absence of the workers at the zoo and the vandalisation of some facilities, a lot of visitors‚ including school children‚ were left stranded and disappointed as management turned them away on Friday for their own safety.
Speaking for City Parks, Moodley stated that some of the roaming vehicles used for feeding the animals within the zoo premises were vandalized and the strike led to turning off water points on Friday.
“City Parks and the Zoo in the interim have applied for an interdict appealing its employees to refrain from acts of vandalism and intimidation‚” said Moodley.
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City Parks workers’ complaints include grading issues‚ disparities of salaries‚ bench-marking‚ labour matters and requests for progression.
The statement giving by Moodley on basic salary amount was no specific but she rather said workers annually receive between 5%to 7% salary increases in the past “few years”.
She gave the assurance that Joburg zoo animals will not suffer as a result of the strike action as there are volunteers to help feed and take care of the animals.