Public servants call for urgent talks on wage cuts

Public Servants Association says any attempts to cut salaries will be ‘vigorously opposed’.
The Public Servants Association says the current public-service wage agreement only ends in 2022 and it must be honoured by the state. Image: Waldo Swiegers/Bloomberg

South Africa’s public-service union called for urgent talks with the government on plans to reduce the state’s wage bill.

Finance Minister Tito Mboweni said last month he’s redoubling efforts to cut the government’s payroll to rein in a widening budget deficit. The nation’s 1.3 million public servants take home 35% of national spending and compensation has grown faster than any other category barring payments for financial assets since 2007.

The Public Servants Association, the main state-employee labour union, said any attempts to cut salaries will be “vigorously opposed” by its more than 240,000 members. The government should also honour an existing wage agreement, it said in an emailed statement Tuesday.

“The current public-service wage agreement only ends in 2022 and must be honoured by the state,” it said. “The PSA, therefore, calls on the state to urgently engage unions on any proposals to reduce the wage bill and find solutions to grow the economy.”

© 2019 Bloomberg

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According to Stats SA the annual average private sector remuneration in 2018/19 was just below R273,000 whereas for employees of national and provincial government the estimated average remuneration was approx. R352,000. National Treasury has estimated that the real figure may even be as high as R393 000. Clearly this is an inverted and unsustainable situation that is contributing to the destruction of our economy. Retrenchments and pay cuts are the order of the day in the private sector but public servants with their cushy, safe jobs are not even willing to sacrifice their above inflation pay rises!

240 000 more ANC parasites destroying the country. Add the massive SOE debt and the outlook is grim.

Let them strike. We will not miss them…

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