News24

Marikana an exploding bomb - Vavi

2012-09-07 15:26

Johannesburg - The violent protests at Lonmin's Marikana mine reflected an "exploding bomb" created by poverty and inequality, Cosatu general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi said on Friday.

"We have warned over and over again that South Africa is sitting on a ticking bomb - the recent Marikana mine massacre was an exploding bomb, sending an alarm signal to us all, [saying] 'Wake up, do something about this situation'," he said.

"That seems to be a very clear message, not just from the workers in Marikana, but across the mining industry."

Vavi was speaking at the annual summit of the National Economic Development and Labour Council (Nedlac) on the East Rand.

Hope for work and income

He said it was unsustainable for the country to maintain its current levels of inequality. Youth unemployment required particular focus.

"If we fail to provide these young people with the hope of work and an income, the consequences for us all will be catastrophic," he said.

"Very many of the unemployed youth should in fact be at school, acquiring skills and increasing their employability potential."

South Africa could not claim to have achieved the goals of the national democratic revolution when wealth was still unevenly distributed.

"The Freedom Charter... and the Polokwane ANC Conference resolutions are at one in rejecting neo-liberal, free-market policies," he said.

"They all insist that the state must intervene to plan the use of the country's resources in the interests of the people."

Education

Vavi said more needed to be done in furthering education in the country, which was one of its "most powerful weapons in our struggle against poverty and inequality".

"We must retain our best teachers and provide professional support in order to improve the quality of education," he said.

"The salary structures of teachers must motivate them to remain in education and help us to lay the foundation to produce the knowledge [for] workers of the future."

Comments
  • deon.louw.7505 - 2012-09-07 15:41

    The bomb will only go off once 30 000 people are jobless. It is going to happen on your watch Vavi.

      JaredVN - 2012-09-07 15:56

      For Vavi to preach about joblessness, is like a butcher pontificating about the benefits of being a vegetarian. He is the head of an organization that is directly to blame for much of SA's joblessness.

      kala.bafazi - 2012-09-07 16:20

      The only reason he worries about job losses is because there are less members to contribute to his nest egg. Other than that he doesn't give a damn about the poor.

      themba.maseko.568 - 2012-09-07 17:02

      I have a problem with people who are demanding a salary emotionally and from the top of their heads. They must just find a better job that will pay them what they want. They use arms and threats and think that will give them money. What we need in ths country is creativity and entrepreneurship. I wish these people had their own businesses to experience employee salary demands at first hand. As for Vavi, he has run out of ideas and just keeps on shouting rhetoric, very sad.

      jacques.otto.50 - 2012-09-07 18:18

      well its is actualy them creating the unrealistic expectation. This in return creates frustration in equality. Lets be honest the ANC wastefull expenditure could have created far more jobs. In such a case not only dad would work for 4 wifes and 20 children but the wifes would also have work creating a better household income. What we have now is one man trying to feed 20 instead of have 2 people feed 4. In other words the person with the job feels he earns to littel but the fact is it is not to little it is because he is trying to feed to many on one salary. More jobs means higher household income. Unions = lack of growth = less jobs

  • max.reynecke - 2012-09-07 15:45

    Vavi, it will take more then an exploding bomb to wake you and your ANC friends up... another 1000 years' evolution might just do the trick but I wont get my hopes up.

  • madise.paul - 2012-09-07 15:47

    we need a change!

  • madise.paul - 2012-09-07 15:48

    we need a change!

      ken.grimblegrumble - 2012-09-07 15:54

      of what? underpants?

      ruan.adlam - 2012-09-07 16:31

      I agree with you Paul!

  • Willie - 2012-09-07 15:48

    Vavi stop telling your support to vote for corrupt ANC. There is no point in giving speeches without addressing the real issues in front of your eyes

  • zukile.marcus - 2012-09-07 15:50

    Yes Vavi, you've been saying this for the past decade...action plan baba!!

      kevin.moxham.3 - 2012-09-07 16:03

      Agree with u - what about SADTU who are part of COSATU - education is in the dumps because of this union and it's members underperforming ...!

  • jimmy.dalton.391 - 2012-09-07 15:53

    It is time for the government to ban unions completely. People should be paid for what they do and not for what their unions say they should get. If you are not satisfied with your salary feel free to go and look for another job. One day the ANC wil wake up and not be in charge any more. I just hope the economy of SA will survive longer than the ANC.

  • larry.piggott1 - 2012-09-07 15:55

    Why not mention Corruption, Incompetence, Inefficiency, Cadre deployment, Crime, Service delivery, Etc, Etc.

      kala.bafazi - 2012-09-07 16:22

      Too much for him to remember.

  • willem.vanrensburg.562 - 2012-09-07 15:55

    This is typical politicking lingo.. "I feel sorry for you, but I’m still doing nothing to help you”.!

  • ken.grimblegrumble - 2012-09-07 15:59

    And in other news today Mr. Vavi took half his salary and gave it a guy selling stuff at the robots. "I have to walk the walk to assist NDR" he said to cheering crowds.

  • nicolas.gombert.16 - 2012-09-07 15:59

    What Vavi says and what Vavi does are two separate things. The man speaks with forked tongue! He says education is the key to alleviating poverty, yet SADTU (a COSATU affiliated union) is the main obstacle to education in this country. Collins Chabane said: "For example, there were discussions on ensuring that teachers were in class teaching seven hours a day." Why doesn't Vavi start here? Get the teachers teaching, Vavi! They are YOUR members. With more than 50% of the youth unemployed, why is COSATU resisting the implementation of the youth employment grant? Simple: because the lazy COSATU members fear that the youngsters are going to take their jobs. You are out of tune and out of touch Mr. Vavi!

  • fourhundredkg.bobbejaan - 2012-09-07 16:03

    Yadda yadda yadda yadda yadda. Another politician trying to capitalise on the Marikana mess. Go home Vavi.

  • ken.grimblegrumble - 2012-09-07 16:07

    Today Mr. Vavi stated on SABC1 that if he ever won the lotto he would pass this money over to the poor to assist with the NDR. The studio audience erupted into cheers. On SABC2 Mr. Vavi stated that gambling was totally against NDR principals and that he has never and would never buy a lotto ticket. The studio audience erupted into cheers.

  • clarencehouse.capetown - 2012-09-07 16:09

    As long as the SA stays corrupt nothing will change!!

      irene.buthelezi.1 - 2012-09-07 16:40

      Not only that. So long as they keep voting for cANCer nothing will change. Even if you take corruption out of the equation, cANCer is not capable of governing.

  • jan.faure - 2012-09-07 16:12

    Vavi talks about "use of the country's resources in the interests of the people" but this government is not interested in the plight of the poor. Government have failed to deliver housing, sanitation, water etc to the poor and the private sector takes the blame. Beside the millions that the mining companies in SA pay the government in mining royalties, company taxes and dividend taxes, the mining companies including Lonmin pay a 'living-out' allowance to their labourers for living expenses. Why? Because government has failed to provide anything. Mining workers are fed up and who can blame them? The gov wont help so their only alternative is to attack their employers.

      johan.nieuwenhuys.7 - 2012-09-07 17:02

      I agree with you...nostly. Their only alternative is NOT to attack their employer, the person that feeds them. They need to turn on the party and government that is neglecting them. That is their best option, simply walk up and put an 'X' next to any other party. To keep on voting for the cANCer is an exercise in futility and not going to get them anyway. Also it is peaceful, no one will get killed.

  • DJPotifar - 2012-09-07 16:15

    It will take too long now to see progress that will satisfy the unemployed. Only radical change can see this happen. The unfortunate answer is a shift from Capitalism to the other side. This makes me shudder. The signs are certainly there.

  • ruan.adlam - 2012-09-07 16:16

    Equality? Where in the world does equality exist? Which country has a Gini Coefficient of 0? Poverty and youth unemployment does not know race. The majority of white graduates are currently suffering greatly under AA due to LIFO and FIFO policies. This is exacerbated by the fact that the older white management of corporations are selling white graduates out to save their own skins. The ownership of mines in South Africa should be studied as a large stake of it is held by white foreigners and a few prominent white South African families. I request government to target these people and to stop stating that ALL whites hold most of South Africa's wealth. Apartheid only made a few white families extremely wealthy just like B-BBEE has only made a few black families extremely wealthy.

  • david.lebethe - 2012-09-07 16:16

    While admitting that nothing has changed since the demise of Apartheid, however, I beg to differ with a notion that Marikana is a reflection of poverty and inequality. Marikana is a reflection of lack of service to union members by their union (in particular Num, an affiliate of Cosatu). Mineworkers complain about how their union (Num) has been aloof and colluded with the employer in most cases. This being a material fact between the parties, I find it therefore vague and embarrasing that Vavi went on to plead extraneous issues when the dispute is purely industrial. It is therefore adviceable for Vavi and Num to deal with real issues affecting them than throwing a red herrings everytime they are found wanting.

  • mbusi.t.nzimande - 2012-09-07 16:18

    Ayi,reading the comments here,its very clear that there is a lot of bias,I don't vote,not for any party,but I'm not ignorant to the truth,what the man does is he's business,publicity stunt or not,there is a lot of sense that a lot of politicians make,its what WE make out of it that's important,this is OUR government,and until people realize that,all this complaining and name calling won't mean sh@*#

      ruan.adlam - 2012-09-07 16:28

      I think that many of our citizens, of every race, are currently living in extreme fear of what the future holds for South Africa. Fear leads to emotion and emotion leads to people saying things which they do not actually mean. It is sad to see that many try to protect their race, but in actual fact they are just trying to protect their own existence.

      mbusi.t.nzimande - 2012-09-07 17:04

      That's the thing,the race card can go both ways,you can use it as an excuse,or it can be used to iron out this sensitive that exists amongst races,there differences,there were races that had the upper hand and those that got the rotten end of the stick,but simply sweeping it under the rug and crying \let's unite\,that's not going to help anything,uncomfortable things need to be said and done in the name of true democracy,that's a fact!

  • alisha.abad.7 - 2012-09-07 16:19

    Well, we never negotiated the freedom charter now did we? We negotiated a New constitution.

      juan.prinsloo.750 - 2012-09-07 17:46

      Very good point. Sick and tired that we have to have this communist crap shoved down our throats.

  • koos.marincowitz - 2012-09-07 16:20

    Is Mr. Vavi not part of the coalition who is governing this country? Is it not time that he takes some responsibility? I think he has more sh-t coming that he can handle and is now looking for an escape.

  • Phelamanga - 2012-09-07 16:20

    The only way out of the morass, caused by the narrow interpretation of the Freedom Charter by the Tripartite Alliance and the Polokwane resolutions over the past 5 years, is neo-liberal, free market policies. The results of the Polokwane conference are there for everybody to see - extremely wealthy government officials, wealthy and corrupt senior party officials and a R63 million palatial private estate for a president. We have a government controlled by COSATU and the SACP, both of which were never voted for by the people, who are driving the campaign to impose a National Democratic state based on the unequal two class system of wealthy party officials and a poverty-stricken, fearful proletariat. Nowhere did this work. You have tried your socialist policies, so how about trying policies that actually do work and deliver? Most of your best teachers are either teaching in independent schools or they are teaching in other people's countries as a result of present policies and SADTU has all but killed off education in areas where it predominates. The mind boggles!

  • irene.buthelezi.1 - 2012-09-07 16:44

    At what point do people take responsibility for their lot in life instead of always blaming their poverty on government, apartheid or the whites. Nobody owes you ANYTHING. If you want something do it for yourself. Don't wait for cANCer, because you'll be dead before you get anything from them. Do it for yourself and open your eyes to see that cANCer is only interested in your vote and NOTHING ELSE! Since when is government or another person responsible for your standard of living??

  • hoepfne - 2012-09-07 16:56

    What is this guy talking about, the youth that actually study and don't burn down the school are being told there are no jobs for you because of AA & BEE!!! Vavi I'd say the time of pillaging MY countries riches are slowly coming to an end!

  • BigChiefPlumbPudding - 2012-09-07 17:05

    I think SA is the only country in the world to put a 'race' label to poverty / inequality.

  • majwarha.balakisi - 2012-09-07 17:06

    NUM should have detected that a long time ago if they where interested in fighting for workers rights. You people are only interested in getting position in the ANC, because you see that as a ticket to you economic freedom.

  • winifred.watson.9 - 2012-09-07 17:08

    The ANC has not set a good example for their people. Firstly, they have enriched only themselves and have flaunted their wealth in the face of the poor. Then when it gets close to voting, the people are told a lot of lies and promises of jobs etc are made in return for their vote. Now 18 years down the line these people have become impatient, they see every day miniters etc getting richer and richer and they are becoming poorer and poorer. Now, somebody has come along and told them how to go about getting what they want at all costs, and thats exactly what has happened. Did the ANC come out and do anything....no they do what they usually do and thats nothing. Now the country is going to implode this is going to filter down to every job sector. Unions have not been doing their job correctly as in the past they got workers to strike and accept that vandalism is ok. They did not teach their members to be patient until all avenues of negotiations have been exhausted. Unions also need to educate their members that a job is something to be valued at all costs. So to me Unions havae only been raking in subs and not doing their job so they are responsible in a big way. Thanks to this, there is going to be even more unemployment as companies are going to downsize maybe go for more automation or close up and look for greener pasteurs. Either way South Africa is in a very bad way. People who have jobs, their backs are breaking under government at the moment.

      Johnson - 2012-09-13 22:12

      We are all being fed big lies - whilst this person or that person is fighting for power, it seems there is always something going on behind closed doors and we are all falling for it - black and white. It{seems like these guys are playing with South African of all race groups, it just depends what you want out of what you are busy with in the world of politics. Why Malema is fighting Lonmin (Ramaposa) - miners are being used and they don’t even know it. In fact they are already being paid R12 500 pm but Cyril puts more than 1/2 in his pocket. Zuma is did not protect him whilst he protected Zuma when it was election time (Zuma sold Malema out) You all thought that Malema was stupid(now that the picture unfolds clarity is surfacing - he knows much more than meets the eye and knows how to use people to get what he wants "power “It’s all politics and not even the miners know why he is there supporting their raise www.marikana-truth.com

  • john.cryink - 2012-09-07 17:14

    Mr. Vavi we are left with the mandella legacy and promises that created entitlement, promises. At the time they knew that it can never be fulfilled.

  • mike.clery - 2012-09-07 17:16

    "If we fail to provide these young people with the hope of work and an income, the consequences for us all will be catastrophic" - says the man blocking the youth wage subsidy .......

  • SM1012 - 2012-09-07 17:20

    The sad part is that poor BLACK-AFRICANS are always exploited in such situation. Some of these Miner Owner and CEO are just sitting and having meeting that at the end they are NOT to the benefit and survival of poor Men & Women going down on hundreds of miles to search GOLD, DIAMOND, PLATINUM. I know some of them they have never been in the shaft nor the lift that takes miners down. The simple thing is...how can someone who works hard get little and one who sell it get more package with benefits?...This is just the beginning of TIME BOMB...!!!

      ruan.adlam - 2012-09-07 18:05

      Workers are exploited all over the world. Why do you think all international companies opt to open shop in China instead of South Africa? China has very poor labour laws but look at their GDP and their improved equality levels, both of which are far better than that of South Africa. Furthermore, the deepest mine in the world in less than 4kms deep. Tell me this - how can a black uneducated semi-skilled person earn R12 500.00 per month when educated and highly skilled fellow blacks earn much less than this? Now this is just ANOTHER time bomb waiting to happen. Should a miner then not earn the same as the president to ensure that equality truly exists?

  • john.cryink - 2012-09-07 17:24

    Mr. Vavi we are left with the mandella legacy and promises that created entitlement, promises. At the time they knew that it can never be fulfilled.

  • maletu.lekoloane - 2012-09-07 18:03

    If this situation is undermined, it would be another worse struggle than when we fought for this \freedom\ and it might be because our government takes an advantage that no one would fight against its government. \HUNGRY MAN IS AN ANGRY MAN\.

  • aiazmir - 2012-09-07 18:20

    The exploding bomb of inequality and poverty was created by a combination of apartheid and the ANC. Do 2 wrongs make a right? I hardly think so. The ANC have to focus on how to resolve this issue, which I am surte they will do while they sip on their pinho caladas.

  • rich.mashimbye - 2012-09-07 18:48

    Civil servants should be hired on merit and paid well for them to be motivated; do away with cadre deployment and employ, promote and reward civil servants on merit

      ruan.adlam - 2012-09-07 19:29

      Well said!

  • bobo.jane.1 - 2012-09-07 20:16

    Dear Vavi - Your Communism Fails.

  • alexander721 - 2012-09-07 20:42

    problem. for how many years have they been talking about what needs to be done yet they do nothing, instead the money ends up in peoples pockets and the very people making the promises say nothing and do nothing. it goes to prove that those in power got there via the wrong people and now they cannot do a thing to those people. corruption corruption corruption. Well done ANC, keep the youth uneducated so they cannot see through your lies and deception.

  • andrew.mackie.90 - 2012-09-08 09:13

    We will never change the mindset of trade union leaders due to the fact they live off the workers fees collected every month. In order for them to continue living in luxury the continually blame the captains of industry of expoiting the labour force. These big business leaders develop and grow the economy with the taxes collected, from these individuals as well as the companies they operate. Whereas union bosses leech off their membership by making promises of a better tomorrow. In fact these are the people making the inflamatory statements that spark unrest. While it is true we have dire poverty and inequality much of this can be overcome by better education which is lacking presently. South Africa is not the only country in the world where this great divide between rich and poor exists, the difference is the acceptance by all to work toward alleviating these conditions and not always pointing fingers at those who have achieved higher standards.

  • howard.komati - 2012-09-08 15:59

    Vavi u did warn the ANC regarding unemployment

  • Johnson - 2012-09-13 22:09

    We are all being fed big lies - whilst this person or that person is fighting for power, it seems there is always something going on behind closed doors and we are all falling for it - black and white. It{seems like these guys are playing with South African of all race groups, it just depends what you want out of what you are busy with in the world of politics. Why Malema is fighting Lonmin (Ramaposa) - miners are being used and they don’t even know it. In fact they are already being paid R12 500 pm but Cyril puts more than 1/2 in his pocket. Zuma is did not protect him whilst he protected Zuma when it was election time (Zuma sold Malema out) You all thought that Malema was stupid(now that the picture unfolds clarity is surfacing - he knows much more than meets the eye and knows how to use people to get what he wants "power “It’s all politics and not even the miners know why he is there supporting their raise www.marikana-truth.com

  • duncan.gill1 - 2012-09-13 22:10

    I think its people's inability to control the amount of children they have and an in-effectual government that cant govern its people effectively that causes inequality and poverty..you don't have the right in today's world to breed without end without responsibility and without caring!If you have to many children you subject them to a life time of poverty and helplessness and they will not stand a chance against those that have the means to wipe them out whenever the need arises!

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