Durban - King Goodwill Zwelithini has cautioned against using strikes as a way of settling industrial differences, saying they have a bad effect on the economy.
Addressing Transnet executives at Durban harbour on Tuesday, the king said he respected the rights of workers to strike. However, this affected the country’s economy and currency in a negative way and he called for other methods of settling differences to be found.
“To protect the SA economy, people should sit around the table to resolve industrial problems,” said the king.
The king’s caution follows the unprotected strikes that are engulfing the country’s mining industry including at Marikana in North West where 46 people have been killed.
The king spoke of the hardship of unemployment and applauded the massive investment to be made by Transnet in KZN’s two ports, at Richards Bay and in Durban.
The first phase of Durban’s new dig-out port would be completed in 2019.
King Zwelithini said it was critical to train black youths in technical skills and to introduce them to maritime industry.
Transnet group chief executive Brian Molefe told the king his company was to spend R4.7 billion in skills development over the next seven years.
“We will train marine pilots, marine engineers, harbour masters and various other skills critical for the efficient running of ports,” Molefe added. - The Mercury