Workers in Mali have embarked on a strike in what is reported to have paralysed economic activities in the country since Monday.
The National Workers’ Union of Mali (UNTM) began a four-day strike to demand better living and working conditions after negotiations with the interim government over wages, bonuses and allowances failed. The strike is said to be widely observed.
Among other demands, the Malian civil servants also want all teachers in community schools to be integrated into the public service.
National workers’ union has warned that the strike was “renewable through next week, and would be unlimited from the week of May the 28th.
The union has asked its activists to remain mobilized and determined for the full success of the strike. The Malian national workers union UNTM which brings together several associations and unions from the public service is the largest trade union in Mali.
UNTM represents teachers, gold miners, health workers and various essential services.
Recent months have seen mounting public anger over the slow pace of socio-economic and security reforms by Mali’s transitional government.
Several other strike notices have also been issued and the opposition movement that galvanized protests that topped former president Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta also intends to resume demonstrations.
Mali’s interim prime minister has been charged with appointing a new government following his resignation and subsequent reinstatement on 14 May.
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South Africa To Investigate Deaths Of 20 Persons Found At Vacant Gold Mine
South African police says it is investigating the deaths of 20 persons suspected to be illegal miners, whose bodies were discovered in two locations, in the gold mining town of Orkney. 14 decomposing bodies were found near a railway line on Wednesday. Five more bodies were discovered outside an old unused mine shaft on Tuesday.
The police believes the deceased, who were found wrapped in white plastic bags, were illegal workers, commonly known as ‘Zama Zamas’. Security agents say the deceased had severe burns on their bodies and autopsies were being done to identify the cause of death.
The South African police say the incident could be linked to a video on social media where a man was seen pleading for assistance at a mine shaft.
South Africa Electricity Under-Performing
South Africa’s electricity company, Eskom, has continued to experience shortfalls in providing power to its consumers. The company has had to implement rolling blackouts because of a high demand for power. The government said it will end existing red tape to deal with power blackouts.
President Cyril Ramaphosa has announced a major shake-up in the energy sector that will allow private power companies to generate more electricity without red tape, to deal with the blackouts. The limit on the self-generation of electricity without a licence has also been lifted from 1mw to 100mw
For years, the state-owned power utility, Eskom, has struggled to meet the demand of one of Africa’s biggest economies.
Ramaphosa says the partial liberalization introduces a new era for South Africa’s troubled energy sector.
These changes will make it easier for independent power providers to generate electricity and sell it back to the grid.
Firms will still need to obtain some licenses, like a grid connection permit.
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