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Striking Staff Fired

Joe Opio/The New Vision/Twenty Ten

Location: Johannesburg, South Africa

Stallion Security staff fired after strike action.

When Simon Kgatla earned a job with Stallion Security guarding one of the major stadiums in Johannesburg, he thought that he would also get a piece of the 2010 World Cup cake promised to all South Africans. However, just a week after the World Cup started, Kgatla’s dream has turned into a nightmare. The 26-year old native of Soweto was among the thousands of Stallion Security staff abruptly sacked after their colleagues went on strike and severely embarrassed FIFA and the Local Organising Committee (LOC).

Kgatla, who speaks in stilted English, wasn’t among the workers who downed tools demanding higher wages. In fact, while his colleagues inspired a security crisis that spread like a wildfire from Durban to Johannesburg, he was at home enjoying his time off and watching a match in a nearby shack.

“I first heard of the strike after the Germany-Australia game,” Kgatla reveals. “I had taken my time off and only heard it on radio. I didn’t take part in it and I didn’t think it would end up affecting me as well. Actually, by this morning, I didn’t even know we who guard Soccer City were involved.” Kgatla was shocked, therefore when, he reported for work at the Stallion Offices at Jeppe Street, only to be informed that his job had been terminated. The stunned youth was then told to report the following day to the same address to get his final wages in...

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