7 Sep 2010

South African strike suspended

7:37 am on 7 September 2010

A strike by more than one million public sector workers in South Africa has been suspended.

Trade Union leaders say they have not accepted a pay offer by the Government, but will halt the strike for three weeks to allow their members time to consider it.

The BBC reports some 1.3 million civil servants went on strike demanding a pay rise of 8.5% and a housing allowance of 1000 rand ($US135) per month. The government has offered 7.5%.

President Jacob Zuma last week ordered his ministers to negotiate an end to the strike, which is entering its fourth week.

The government's renewed offer was initially refused by the unions and the Congress of South African Trades Unions.

The strike has seen strong criticism of President Jacob Zuma, who the unions helped bring to power in 2009. Analysts say the unions are angry that they have received little from him.