'Nationalise Motsepe's wealth'

2009-11-02 16:27

Johannesburg - The National Union of Metalworkers (Numsa) on Monday called for the nationalisation of the wealth of South Africa's richest man, Patrice Motsepe and ANC struggle hero, Tokyo Sexwale.

This comes after South Africa's Rich List was published by the Sunday Times on Sunday.

The list, compiled by Who Owns Whom, showed that Motsepe was the richest South African with R14.2bn.

Numsa said it was concerned that massive wealth, worth billions, was concentrated in the hands of private individuals.

Unequal

"This obscene and massive wealth is being reported by the Sunday Times in the midst of the revelations that South Africa has apparently taken over Brazil as the most unequal country in the world ever," said spokesperson Castro Ngobese.

He said the fact that South Africa was the most "unequal" country in the world was confirmed by Cape Town University's Professor Haroon Bhorat.

"Why should such massive wealth be in the hands of private individuals?" asked Ngobese.

"We strongly believe that our National Democratic Revolution (NDR) as encapsulated in the Freedom Charter was never meant to reproduce or replace a white capitalist class with a black capitalist class or co-opt connected politicians to join exploiters."

He said the NDR has always been "anti-imperialist and anti-capitalist".

"This then calls for the radical and revolutionary agenda to be championed by the broad movement as led by the ANC to transfer the wealth of our country to the hands of the people as a whole, as opposed to a selected few."

Service delivery protests

He said failure by the ANC to transfer the wealth will lead to an upsurge of service delivery protests.

"As Numsa, we are calling for the nationalisation, and eventually the socialisation of the massive and privately owned wealth in the hands of Motsepes, Sexwales, Macozomas, Nhlekos, Mittals and Oppenheimers of this world," he said.

Ngobese said Bhorat confirmed that whilst inequalities had risen amongst black South Africans, the growth of white South Africans salaries between 1995 and 2008 surpasses by far the growth of salaries amongst black South Africans.

The salaries of white South Africans had grown by 83% from 1995 to 2008 while those of black South Africans only grew by 38%, he said.

He said Numsa would lobby other unions affiliated to the Congress of SA Trade Unions to mount a "radical and militant" campaign to put a stop to "excessive privately owned wealth and salaries which are reproducing racialised (class and gendered) apartheid inequalities and opulence".


- SAPA

Read more on:    numsa  |  patrice motsepe  |  tokyo sexwale
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