Service disruptions at MTN might become the norm as strike action by the Communication Workers Union (CWU) intensifies. CWU president Clyde Mervin was scathing in his update on the meetings his union is having with MTN. Mervin did not mince his words when he spoke to Kaya FM a few hours ago.

“When it comes to the whole issue of increase and the whole issue of the bonus payment flat right they are not making any move,” Mervin told listeners, “So from where we are those are the main issues workers were striking for… so as Communication Workers Union we are going to unleash all our ammunition to MTN.”

MTN on the other hand feels that there is little hope that the parties will reach an agreement. Chief human resources executive Themba Nyathi is looking to to external assistance.

“In the interests of resolving all matters of mutual interest, MTN hereby propose that an independent binding arbitrator be appointed to adjudicate the matters at hand,” said Nyati, “The Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) or the Labour Court can facilitate such binding final arbitration in a fair, impartial manner. MTN undertakes to abide by the findings of such an arbitrator as final and binding.”

MTN CEO Ahmad Farroukh has issued an apology to consumers for service disruptions that we reported on yesterday. He confirmed in a direct apology to customers closure of the 808 Call Centre and other disruptions to services centres including retail stores and MTN’s high value repair centre.

CWU is demanding a 10% salary increase and a 16% bonus to workers’ annual salaries. MTN is offering 8 percent.