Numsa slams Gordhan for macro-economic policies

Numsa president Cedric Gina. (Gallo)

Numsa president Cedric Gina. (Gallo)

The National Union of Metal Workers of South Africa [Numsa] has lambasted Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan for undermining the ANC’s 2007 Polokwane resolutions by continuing to push macro-economic and neo-liberal policies, like the wage subsidy.

It also criticised the ANC for pursuing Democratic Alliance [DA] type policies.

“The practical, political reality created here is that in fact on such matters the DA is in alliance with the ANC,”,  Numsa president Cedric Gina  said at a media briefing on Wednesday, ahead of its national congress in Durban next week.

Gina, who is also a board member of the SABC, accused Gordhan and treasury officials for disregarding the ANC, following his announcement that that his department had set aside R5-billion as budget for the youth wage subsidy, that will be given to the private sector to create much needed employment in the country.

“Numsa has been talking about [the attitude] of the treasury for a while now. The officials there continue to undermine Polokwane resolutions. The issue of wage subsidy was raised and defeated in 2005.

“For the minister to now raise it in Parliament must raise an alarm. The minister is deployed by the ANC. If he feels he has issues, why not raise them in the ANC structures,” said Gina.

President Jacob Zuma, who is seen by some within the labour movement as having the interest of workers at heart, supports the wage subsidy.

“We are confident the ANC policy conference this year and the elective conference in December will assist in resolving such anti-working class behaviour by individuals deployed by the ANC in government,” said Gina.

He warned against the tendency of anti-working class behaviour by ANC ministers, such as those who impose e-tolls and the youth wage subsidy and the Minister of Labour Mildred Oliphant, who is pushing for labour law reforms now before Parliament.

“It is such kind of behaviour that now threatens to worsen the disagreements in the alliance. Such ministers now create conditions for the ANC in government to be defended by the DA as it simultaneously attacks Cosatu.

“We reject and condemn the proposed amendments to labour laws, which will not ban labour brokers and instead entrench provisions for unions to lose the right to strike,” he said.

The issue of the wage subsidy, labour broking, nationalisation of mines and the e-tolls, are expected to dominate the agenda at the ANC’s policy conference to be held at Gallagher Estate in two weeks time.

Matuma Letsoalo

Matuma Letsoalo

Matuma Letsoalo is the political editor of the Mail & Guardian. He joined the newspaper in 2003 and has won numerous awards since then, including the regional award for Vodacom Journalist of the Year in the economics and finance category in 2015, SA Journalist of the Year in 2011, the Mondi Shanduka SA Story of the Year award in 2008 and CNN African Journalist of the Year – MKO Abiola Print Journalism in 2004. Read more from Matuma Letsoalo

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