By Ra-ees Moerat
After the leadership of Cosatu gathered last week, the trade union made public its findings on service delivery in the Western Cape. Regional secretary of Cosatu, Tony Ehrenreich says that the score allocations for service delivery in the Western Cape are based on the audit conducted by their own members.
“We look at all the areas of service delivery of government and based on the consensus of our members and we’ll give a score indication,” he says.
The Provincial Government Audit shows that, according to COSATU, it is the most important indicators that are ranked poorly. COSATU ranked service delivery on public transport in rural areas, with an appalling 0%. Ehrenreich says that options for transport in these areas are limited.
“Public transport in rural areas is virtually non-existent. Poor people travelling from rural towns and farms have no options for public transport,” he says.
“The only form of transport for these people is to jump on the back of a farming truck or hike as an alternative,” he adds.
Simultaneously, the union feels that service delivery from the City of Cape Town in certain parts of the city, is just as poor.
Ehreinreich alleges that the City of Cape Town diverts its attention to complaints of barking dogs instead of issues on the Cape Flats. He also alleges that the DA administration expands and perpetuates inequality in the city.
“They [City of Cape Town] attend to traffic fines and dogs barking, but they’re not dealing with the challenges of the Cape Flats,” he says.
“There is inequality in the city and the DA administration is expanding and perpetuating inequalities in the city,” he claims.
Moreover, he alleges that the City of Cape Town do not make provision for sufficient sewerage capacity in old black areas.
“The sewerage capacity is exploding on the Cape Flats and it’s not getting an upgrade, which leads to sewerage bursts and sewerage running into people’s homes,” he says.
Furthermore, he claims that the DA is embarking on vanity projects where they implement infrastructure that is “only used by three people”.
Meanwhile, Ehrenreich commented on how Affirmative Action and Employment equity is allegedly implemented in Cape Town.
“In this city [Cape Town] you’ll see companies not complying with employment equity and openly employing and stating that they’ll continue to employ white people in senior positions.
Commenting on Cape Town’s top social media trend, #VanessHartley, Tony advocates for the arrest of those who commits racial crimes.
“We [COSATU] supports the law to criminalise racism and hate speech and people like this woman in Hout Bay should be arrested for what such statements does to an individual, subjected to it and the society,” he says.
Despite this and the 15% allocation for combating racism by the DA, the party has publicly condemned the alleged comments posted by Vanessa Hartley.
Endorsing the presidency of Cyril Ramaphosa
The trade union addressed their endorsement of ANC Deputy President, Cyril Ramaphosa as the next leader of the party. Tony motivated the endorsement, saying that the ruling party is unsteady, considering the counts of challenges the party has faced this year, as a result of President Jacob Zuma.
“We are pleased that COSATU’s Central Executive Committee [CEC] pronounced on the presidency of Cyril Ramaphosa. We believe that there has been a lot of damage done to the image of our country and the ANC, by Zuma,” he says.
“We sent the signal to indicate clearly who COSATU wants to see as the new leadership of the ANC and the country,” he added.
He reflected on the impact that the decision to replace finance ministers have had on the country this year, especially on the working class of South Africa. He prompted for a discussion on how to take things forward.
“It led to a huge run on the currency, which in turn, wiped out savings of workers in the form of their pension funds,” he says.
Commenting on the notion of a representative recall of Zuma, Ehrenreich states that although a discussion around this has started within the CEC, no decision has been taken to recall the president.
“We [COSATU] are a sub-structure of the CEC so we can’t take the decision either as that would be contrary to the national decision,” he says.
“Our [COSATU] leadership has reflected on the matter and found that there are serious grounds to considering the notion of a recall,” he added.
COSATU will be kicking off 2017 with a massive campaign to alleviate inequality in the Western Cape. VOC