Cape Town – The Food and Allied Workers Union (Fawu), representing hundreds of Blue Ribbon Bread workers in Salt River, has distanced itself from the torching of a vehicle, stabbing of a company promoter and injuring of schoolchildren.
This comes as Premier blamed its striking workers for using violent intimidation tactics after its promoter was stabbed while delivering free bread to a school.
Fawu general secretary Katishi Masemola said they did not condone violence from anyone.
“We will, as we have done over the last 65 days of the strike, encourage our members to be non-violent even under extreme provocation by the private security enlisted by Premier Foods,” he said.
The company’s spokesperson, Siobhan O’Sullivan, said: “The 60-day strike has been marked by violence and intimidation of employees, traders and consumers.
"In some areas, the intimidation has escalated into violence, damage of property and personal injury. Numerous incidents of intimidation of traders, consumers and even schoolchildren have been seen.
“We are calling for calm and are doing our utmost to resolve the strike within the ambit of the law. It is regrettable that our employees, community members and innocent consumers have been impacted by this strike.
"Premier has and will continue to engage with the employees and their union representatives to resolve the strike quickly and within the ambit of the law.”
More than 600 workers have been on strike since November 28, demanding a wage increase.