Johannesburg - Cosatu has endorsed strikes for lower interest rates and says it
is time for new leadership at the SA Reserve Bank.
"We want change there [at the SARB]," Congress of SA Trade
Unions president Sdumo Dlamini told reporters on Thursday. He was
speaking in Johannesburg at the end of a Cosatu central executive
Asked if the union federation would support SARB governor Tito
Mboweni staying on when his contract expired in August, Dlamini
said: "[While] he has been there, we've been complaining about the
same issues. We need change there."
Cosatu general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi said the federation
supported mass action by the National Union of Metalworkers of SA
It staged protests outside the bank last week while SARB's
monetary policy committee was meeting over interest rates.
"We have engaged with the Reserve Bank in our own right... this
high interest rate regime is impacting on the ability of the
country to grow," said Vavi.
"What Numsa is bringing, is the dimension of engaging on a mass
Vavi said there now be protests every time the committee met to
discuss possible rates.
"Every time they meet, we must be there. We must use our members
to come and engage."
The next time there is a protest, Vavi said, Mboweni himself
must accept the memorandum, unlike last week, when SARB officials
refused to accept the document.
"He must not send some junior bureaucrat to insult us," said
Numsa said earlier this week it would ask all Cosatu affiliates
to join in rolling mass action if the SARB did not cut interest
"This is going to be a federation-wide campaign," said Vavi.
"We have this stupid policy of inflation targeting which is
keeping interest rates high. It clearly has not helped us much to
grow the economy."