Much of the labour movement is unlikely to be pleased with Finance
Minister Pravin Gordhan's 2016 Budget Speech, says Terry Bell in his
latest Labour Wrap.
Cape Town - Much of the labour movement is unlikely to be pleased with Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan's 2016 Budget Speech, says Terry Bell in his latest Labour Wrap.
The fact that social grants fall short of even official inflation means that the poorest sections of society will find that they can buy even less.
One thing we can be pretty sure about is that the majority of the trade union movement are not going to be terribly happy despite the fact that there has been some tax relief for low paid and middle income earners and the fact that no one really expected VAT be increased especially not in in the election year.
"But what Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan made perfectly clear was that this budget and the whole orientation of the government is still dedicated to pursuing the National Development Plan NDP as it stands and as I'm sure you're all aware just about all the unions totally oppose the orientation of the NDP," said Bell.
It looks very much as if Minister Gordon is hoping to be able to pull in rather a lot of the ill-gotten gains by perhaps announcing an amnesty a little bit later in the year, Bell speculated.
"That again is not going to placate the trade union movement. As has been said in the run-up to the Budget you had the various congresses from Cosatu, Fedusa and the National Union of Metal Workers, who is in the process of forming a new labour federation, all basically having their doubts about the way this government has run its economic policies ever since 1996.
"Clearly nothing is changing, when nothing's changing it means aluta continua, it means that tensions within the Alliance
will continue, it means that the tensions between unions will continue at a time when the unions are weak and less than a quarter of formal workers in formal employment in fact is unionised," said Bell.
This, he said, will be the focus area of his Inside Labour column which will be published on Fin24 tomorrow.
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