CAPE TOWN- General secretary of the South African Federation of Trade Unions (Saftu), Zwelinzima Vavi,was very critical of the minimum wage as he called the national minimum wage a slave wage and challenged President Cyril Ramaphosa and other politicians to try and live on R20 per hour.
Speaking in parliament on Thursday afternoon, the union handed over a memorandum to a representative of Parliament, rejecting the national minimum wage and amendments to labour law, the new minimum wage offered is R3500 per month.
Vavi said, “These amendments (labour bills) are being pioneered by President Cyril Ramaphosa, they call him a buffalo as if it is a good thing.”
Vavi said the president should reconsider the wage and put it on the back of his buffalo, he said, “As workers we say to him and to Cosatu (Congress of South African Trade Unions) today – to hell with all of you and your slavery wages. We are here to demand a living wage.”
He added, “Why not take R20 [an hour] for yourselves just for one month and see if you can afford the Dogmor (dog food) for your dogs. They have medical aid for their dogs. [They must] see if they can afford medical aid for their cats and their dogs,”
Vavi continued emphasizing his point, he said, “Every member of Parliament that thinks it’s okay to give workers R11, why don’t you try it on your children? If it is not okay for your child, if it is not okay for you – why do you want to impose it on black workers? What happened to your conscience?”
Saftu wants Parliament to respond of their demands before April 25 and warned to make the country ungovernable.
“We want to give them a warning – we are going to resist. We are going to fight back,” Vavi said.
Video Credit- News24
Photo Credit- eNCA