trade unions

State Likely to Cut e-Tolls Cost - COSATU

The Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) says the government is to implement the e-toll system in Gauteng at a reduced cost.

COSATU president, Sdumo Dlamini, has been quoted in the media as saying that the African National Congress has presented COSATU with a ‘detailed response’ to the arguments the federation put forward opposing the tolls.

Dlamini however, says that COSATU is not backing down from its opposition to e-tolls and will take the government’s stance to its central executive committee for a decision on how to proceed.

COSATU Proposes Alternative Road Funding Methods

The Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) will present proposals on alternative methods to fund road improvements, at its next meeting with government’s inter-ministerial committee (IMC) appointed to deal with e-tolls.

COSATU spokesperson, Patrick Craven, points out that, “We want the meeting to look at proposals from the African National Congress-led task team, on alternate ways to fund road improvements."

Meanwhile, the Opposition to Urban Tolling Alliance (OUTA), who brought the High Court application, held talks with the Inter-Ministerial Committee.

IMC, Trade Unions, to Meet Over e-Tolling

A meeting between the inter-ministerial committee on e-tolling and Congress of South African Trade Unions, chaired by Deputy President, Kgalema Motlanthe, will again convene this week.

According to Motlanthe’s spokesperson, Thabo Masebe, the meeting on 5 October 2012 agreed that more time is needed for both parties to consider the proposals on the table.

Earlier, the Opposition to Urban Tolling Alliance said it is clear government intends to launch e-tolling in Gauteng before a court review took place.

COSATU Vows to Resist e-Tolling

The Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) says it will resist the introduction of Gauteng's e-tolling project with every power the trade union has.

COSATU general secretary, Zwelinzima Vavi, points out that, “In our view, it would be a huge mistake by government if it was to steam ahead on the basis of the Constitutional Court judgment and implement what we all know is an extremely unpopular policy decision."

Zuma’s Democracy View Outdated: Solidarity

Trade union, Solidarity, has described as ‘shocking and outdated’, the statement by President Jacob Zuma that in a democracy, the majority prevails.

Solidarity deputy chief executive, Dirk Hermann, argues that Zuma’s view creates two levels of citizens in South Africa, adding that, “One has more rights - that is to say the majority - and other has fewer rights, minorities.”

SA Education System Criticised

The country's education system came under scrutiny at the first Equal Education congress held in Tembisa.

Addressing the congress, Congress of South African Trade Unions general secretary, Zwelinzima Vavi, said 18 years into democracy, the country's education, despite its huge budget, still produced poor results.

Vavi also called for the investigation into the scandalous book saga that took place in Limpopo.

COSATU Criticises R2m Land Deal

The Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) in Limpopo has criticised the ‘meagre’ payment of just more than R2 million to the Molekana clan for land dispossessed from them and on which Anglo Platinum has a mining operation outside Mokopane.

COSATU provincial secretary, Dan Sebabi, describes the settlement as ‘daylight robbery’ because the clan lost all the rights to the land, including ownership, for a payment totalling R2 295 300, that was shared among 42 households.

COSATU Threaten to Act on Secrecy Bill

The Confederation of South African Trade Union (COSATU) has vowed to take the Protection of State Information Bill to the Constitutional Court if it is passed in its current form.

COSATU spokesperson, Patrick Craven, says that their main concern is that the Bill will criminalise people who blow the whistle on crime, financial mismanagement and corruption.

Union Defends the Constitutional Court

The Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) general-secretary, Zwelinzima Vavi, has defended the Constitutional Court, which is facing a judicial review by the government.

Vavi points out that, "We remain convinced that there is no basis to reduce the powers of the Constitutional Court to review the decisions of the legislature or executive."

He has been quoted as saying that the Constitutional Court handed down valuable judgments that ‘cemented key socio-economic rights for the working class majority’.

DENOSA Welcomes Health Funding

The Democratic Nursing Organisation of South Africa (DENOSA) has welcomed Finance Minister, Pravin Gordhan’s decision to allocate additional funding to health.

In a press statement, the union points out that, "We are delighted that health will receive an additional R12.3 billion over the next three years with R45 million allocated to nursing colleges."

It further describes the move as a good step in dealing with the ‘chronic’ staff shortages in nursing and in ensuring that there was sufficient personnel to deliver healthcare.

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