Num v Wanli Stone Belfast (Pty) Ltd [2015] 3 BLLR 286; (2015) 36 ILJ 1261 (LAC) per Musi JA [Waglay JP and Dlodlo AJA concurring]

The right to strike is not absolute.  There are limitations.  The more complicated issues are classified as ‘refusal to bargain’ issues.  Apart from the usual procedures there is an extra requirement of an ‘advisory award’ before a strike will be protected.  In this matter it was necessary to determine whether the issue in dispute was wages or a ‘refusal to bargain’.  Having decided that the true issue was the management team’s refusal to bargain with the trade union, it was held that in the absence of the advisory award the strike was unprotected.  The dismissals were held to be for a valid and fair reason related to the unprotected strike and a fair procedure was followed as well.  The union’s appeal was disallowed with costs.