Avatar photo

By Editorial staff


Fair to say ANC created unions’ greed

The demands of unions for a 10% pay hike is unfeeling and greedy.

One of the most callous statements yet uttered by union leaders not known for caring a whit about others came from National Education, Health and Allied Workers’ Union (Nehawu) Western Cape provincial secretary Baxolise Mali this week.

Addressing protesters in Cape Town, he said: “The employer says people are dying. It is not our responsibility to keep people’s lives.”

That sums of the attitude of many in the “civil” service, who view government jobs as guaranteed sheltered employment from which they are seldom dismissed, rather than as opportunities to serve the public.

ALSO READ: People’s lives ‘not our responsibility’, says Nehawu leader as strike cripples hospitals

Yet, to appear to celebrate the fact that people have died because of your strike action – and Health Minister Joe Phaahla said at least  four people died as a direct result of the withdrawal of labour and services by protesters – shows unions have grown bloated and grotesque under the patronage of the ANC.

The protesters are, they seem to forget, already a privileged sector in South African society. They actually have jobs.

With unemployment at well over 30% and with many struggling to feed their families, the demands of unions for a 10% pay hike, while most workers are getting less than half that, is unfeeling and greedy.

Yet, unions and other protesters have discovered that violence – and even deaths, like those of the unfortunate patients entrusted to these heartless “carers” – is one way to get something out of the government.

This is the monster the ANC created.

Phaahla has promised that government legal teams will look at possible action, including bringing criminal charges against those involved in the violence and, at the very least, they will be disciplined internally.

None of that, though, will help comfort the families of those who have, effectively, been murdered by health workers who turned their backs.

NOW READ: ‘They’ll never get it’ – Nehawu’s strike in quest for 10% raise ‘pure foolishness’

Access premium news and stories

Access to the top content, vouchers and other member only benefits