Cosatu president Sdumo Dlamini has warned the ANC to stop abusing the labour federation’s loyalty or risk the failure of both institutions.
“We need to take each other seriously. If we don’t, we create a situation where we all shall fall, and I don’t think any of us want that,” he told News24 on Thursday.
Cosatu said in a statement on Thursday it had grown tired of the ANC’s unfulfilled promises on banning labour brokers and implementing a national health insurance (NIH) and a social security plan.
Dlamini said plans to introduce a national minimum wage were in limbo, the NHI was under serious threat and deadlines for social security reforms had not been met.
The last straw was when Cosatu’s representative was “attacked” when he raised the issue of ANC policies at a discussion on the mid-term budget in Parliament last week.
“We feel comrades are abusing our loyalty as workers to this alliance. People say we are threatening, but you can’t sustain a situation, as a government and ruling party, where there is a general unhappiness of workers on issues that could have been resolved a long time ago.”
Nationwide strike planned
Dlamini criticised Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan for blaming “demanding” public servants for the bloated public service wage bill but not questioning the salaries of a “bloated Cabinet”. He said the public sector wage bill included ministers’ salaries, their staff, cars and homes in Pretoria and Cape Town.
Some ANC leaders had blamed the party’s loss of support in the August 3 local government elections on Cosatu’s expulsion of Numsa and its sacking of secretary general Zwelinzima Vavi, he said.
Cosatu’s central executive committee is expected to meet in two weeks. Its leadership has faced increasing pressure to act against the ANC’s perceived inability to meet workers’ demands.
It has applied to Nedlac to stage a nationwide strike to demand free education. During a meeting at Nedlac on Thursday to discuss university fees, government sent junior officials who did not have a mandate, Dlamini said.
He challenged the ANC and government to discuss these issues with them.[Source: News24]