Foundation won't be intimidated by Cosatu boycott threats

2015-07-14 20:00

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Johannesburg – The Free Market Foundation would not be intimidated by Cosatu’s threats to boycott its chairperson Herman Mashaba’s company, it said on Tuesday.

“There is just no way we can be intimidated by such threats. We operate within the legal framework,” Mashaba said.

He said he had no issue with the Cosatu.

“We live in a democratic country. If they believe that their actions will help to arrest the high rate of unemployment to protect small businesses, they are most welcome to do as they please,” he said.

Cosatu has taken issue with the FMF’s court challenge to section 32(2) of the Labour Relations Act, which compels the labour minister to extend bargaining council agreements to businesses that were not party to the agreement.

Mashaba referred to it as “an unconstitutional piece of legislation” that had destroyed many small businesses in the last 15 years.

It was easier to start a small business in 1985, when he started selling his range of Black Like Me hair care products, than at present, he said.

“There are so many things working against small business in this country. The environment is not conducive for small business right now.

"Government needs to revise that piece of legislation. We just want her [the labour minister] to consider the implications of this agreement to non-parties,” he said.

Asked whether he was saddened that Cosatu president Sidumo Dlamini might never use his company’s Beeswax Black Hairdye, he said people had the right to spend their hard-earned money as they saw fit.

“I don’t expect people to do me favours,” he said.

Cosatu’s acting national spokesperson Norman Mampane said on Sunday that the federation believed it should continue to strengthen the collective bargaining regime.

“As and when such activities are happening, we may elect to be friends of the court in defence of the collective bargaining,” he said of the court case.

“As a practical response, we will consider influencing our members not to buy any products that are produced by any related companies that work with FMF,” he said.

“These companies are undermining all collective bargaining in South Africa”.

Jayne Boccaleone, speaking on behalf of the FMF, said all affidavits and answering affidavits had been filed in the High Court in Pretoria.

“The heads of argument have to be in next month. We are expecting a court hearing as soon as possible after August. We also expect it to go to the Constitutional Court,” she said.

Cosatu’s Free State executive committee started the call for the boycott.

Its provincial secretary, Monyatso Mahlatsi, had not replied to a request for comment by Tuesday afternoon.

Read more on:    cosatu  |  herman mashaba  |  bloemfontein

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