Further Denel asset attachments coming

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Six Denel divisions representing the spine of the conglomerate’s manufacturing capabilities will have assets attached in terms of a court order awarded to Solidarity in another round of legal wrangling over outstanding salaries and employee benefits.

The divisions are Dynamics, Land Systems, PMP (Pretoria Metal Pressings), Overberg Test Range (OTR), Vehicle Systems and Properties.

Warrants of executions totalling R90 million were submitted to the sheriff following a Labour Court ruling earlier this week.

Solidarity said in a statement in support of the asset attachment: “Denel simply cannot fall back on the excuse there is no money”.

The Centurion-headquartered trade union maintains funds are available funds must be “mobilised and prioritised” if the State-owned defence and technology conglomerate is to avoid “a deliberate contempt of court order”.

“What Denel is doing amounts to a total failure to fulfil its duties across the board: decision making is slow; implementation hardly ever takes place and when decisions are made and people want to implement them, the necessary funds are not mobilised. It is a crying shame that we have to constantly approach the courts to force Denel to do the right thing with the necessary funds as soon as possible. If we don’t do so, the future of our members is at risk,” Derek Mans, Solidarity Defence and Aviation Sector Co-ordinator, said.

Solidarity points out that for over two years some employees had to make do with partial or no salary payments from Denel.

“It is unacceptable that ordinary workers have to forfeit livelihoods because of the ineptitude and incompetence of this company’s top management. This is intolerable and must be opposed. If Denel does not want to pay, we will have its assets seized. After all, Denel has already taken way too much from our members,” Mans added.

At the end of December Denel owed R789 million to employees and R900 million to suppliers.

In addition to Solidarity, a group of current and former Denel employees plan to attach over R4 million apparently residing in a Denel company account with Rand Merchant Bank (RMB) as response to the troubled State-owned enterprise not complying with a court order.

The group of 14, in all probability members of the Denel Employees Association (DEA), went to the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria in search of salary settlements dating back to May 2020, according to Fin24.

A report in the Johannesburg-based digital daily has it the court ruled in their favour in January to meet the salary obligations. “Denel did not oppose the application and was ordered to pay within 10 days by 3 February. According to their lawyer, payment has not yet materialised,” Fin24 reported last week.