'Budget of the bourgeoisie', chants Saftu during demonstrations in Joburg

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Finance Minister Tito Mboweni arrives in Parliament to deliver the 2021 Budget Speech. (GCIS)
Finance Minister Tito Mboweni arrives in Parliament to deliver the 2021 Budget Speech. (GCIS)
  • Around 100 SAFTU members took to the streets of Johannesburg protesting unemployment and a range of labour issues. 
  • After the march to the Joburg central police station, the South African Police Union handed over a memorandum asking for better protection against Covid-19.
  • Similar demonstrations took place in Cape Town and KwaZulu-Natal.  

The South African Federation of Trade Unions (Saftu) has labelled Finance Minister Tito Mboweni's budget, "a budget of the bourgeoisie". 

Saftu Gauteng took to the streets on Wednesday as part of a national strike to coincide with the budget speech.

A group of about 100 people convoyed to Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital and then headed to the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) in central Joburg before marching to the city's central police station to hand over a memorandum. 

 South African Federation of Trade Unions took to
South African Federation of Trade Unions took to the streets across the country in protest of unemployment and other labour issues
News24 Lwandile Bhengu

"The ANC-led government is failing our people, the budget that is going to be delivered today we already know it is a bourgeoisie budget, it's not gonna be a people's budget. The people's budget is number one because it is dedicated to building clinics that are in a bad state to fix the [provision of] hospitals' PPE and fix the schools that are collapsing. Our children are falling into holes in the rural areas. 

"The people's budget is a budget that can create jobs. Yesterday, Stats SA released a shocking statement on unemployment that was already at an alarming high," said Saftu Gauteng convenor Oupa Ralake.

Saftu has about 30 unions affiliated to it, one of which is the South African Police Union (SAPU), which handed over a memorandum of demands to police management at Joburg central police station. 

"We are not happy about the non-compliance of the Covid-19 regulations by management. You will find that we also lack PPE and each and every time we try to talk to management they keep changing their statement. In a nutshell, we are saying 'police lives matter' because at the end of the day, you are gonna need them for your operations, you are going to need them to do your roadblocks, but just start to take care of them," SAPU stated.

At the top of their memorandum, SAPU also want police management to develop a concrete policy to protect them in light of incidents of officers being killed in the line of duty. 

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