Government, business and labour made a social pact to call on CEOs and executive directors in the private sector and public sector, to agree on a freeze on increases in salaries and bonuses over the next 12 months.
The salary freeze is meant to recover investor confidence and is part of government’s response to the frustration that exists among sections of the workforce at the high income inequalities in South Africa which has lead to industrial action and social unrest.
The pay freeze was expected to start with the President and filter down through all sectors of society.
However, two days after this pact was made President spokesperson Mac Maharaj announced that “President Jacob Zuma would not be the first to freeze his salary, as he has asked companies to do with their CEOs, because due processes had to be followed in decision-making within the government”
Cabinet ministers reportedly received a 5.5% increase in July, which brings President Zuma’s package to R2.6m
What do you think about this proposal?
Can government expect senior executives to freeze their salaries when the president is unwilling to take the lead?
I'm afraid that he will need to do more than just freeze his salary to recover investor confidence. This is just another example of his poor leadership. Greed knows no boundaries.
I agree & would be very surprise if anything more is said concerning the 'freze'' from any goverment official!
The concept of leading by example obviously does not mean anything to our President. It is easy for him to put pressure and guilt on others while he continues with his lavish lifestyle. I am not surprised he is not practising what he preaches. That is a politician for you.
If the Presidency cut its catering bills; travels for spouses and get down to 3 star hotels then we can make sense out of the proposals. Why does government engage too many Consultants when there are DGs with fat packs already?. Government can do more in slashing expenditures first. Good idea from a wrong office rather!!!
Thank you Cindy for posting such sensitive topic ,however let us call a spade to spade.
Presidency is the highest non academic ranking in a country, by nomination
Its life time is five years (unguaranteed ),It is not upgrading any Cv it only add in your biography .
The crux of a matter is any one prepared to freeze his or her income to carter for the lowest pay.
Marufu ,What you are saying it sounds pretty good and I have the same feeling as you said it ,why we must still pay so much why our president including all cabinet members they enjoy such kind of luxury. Is n't true that it should start with me.
Megan quite good but that is not Zuma "s fault it is a fault for every one in this country.
Let us not politicize this other wise it will go out of proportional
Hi Mandlenkosi, I like the way you picked out the different issues. There seems to be something that when people get to the top they forget about the people at the bottom. Maybe we should publicise more about what Bill Gates and his wife are doing with their money. There are wealthy people who do make large contributions to relieve poverty.
Thank you all for your comments :)
Economists and labour market experts are now warning that this proposal will drive execs to leave the country and find employment where their skills are valued. Many believe this is not an economically sound proposal and that government should 'focus on up-lifting the poor rather than taking from the rich.'
In light of these gloomy predictions do you think this proposal is a good one?
Hi Cindy, executives may threaten to leave - but where are they going? Greece, Portugal, Spain, the UK, the USA, the middle east, north Africa - China? Everything may seem greener, but look at the figures of international organisations like the World Bank and the OECD on issues of productivity and growth and you'll see the problem. Then even where there is growth, add in violence and political issues including the rise of fascism in Europe - and the world gets very small.
Most definitely no. But then freezing pay increases is not the answer either. Government needs to stop stealing, defrauding, being corrupt, financially mismanaging and lining their own pockets. That's where it needs to start......
Freezing the salaries of the highest paid will just mean less tax going into government- and even less service delivery- at least that will then be the excuse for less service delivery!
What we need is honest politicians who have integrity and who do not lie and defraud the people they say they are helping. We need servant leaders not the shower we have- people genuinely committed to seving the people not themselves. That we don't have here - and in many other countries of the world today unfortunately.
Jan, I agree with you that we need to have a focus on "service" "delivery" and less self enrichment from government officials. But I do also think that those high paid executives could be doing a lot more to support government in poverty alleviation -through policies on bursaries, skills development and training, housing, medical cover, transport - improving the quality of life of their employees and their families. Those working then have greater facility to assist the unemployed. We know that the currently employed each support a number of additional unemployed. We do also know that we now have a situation of the "working poor", people who are employed but can't afford to feed, clothe and educate their children.
I suggest we should all be asking more questions: of business about what they are doing - and of government - where exactly the money is going. How much on transport, entertainment, housing and so on.
You are right in your last sentence - that's what we need to change - unless we do all work together to resolve poverty and unemployment we're going to have a big problem - and look at my response to Cindy, there is no longer anywhere else to go - so we better start paying attention to making what we have got work.
Our president is confused simply because of his lack back bone - The pro Zuma are taking this country down the drain because of their greediness and self centred behaviour. Unfortunately the masses of this country will do nothing about this man and his crew. It is clear, huge salary gap is a real problem in this country if not attended to, it will still erupt very ugly in the near future.
No Ways ,what about those lazy people working for the companies ,none productivity I am also included,The time Iam spending on the computer now is not budgeted for.
When Sandton was built who was staying there ,building infrastructure on the country side ,is it awaste .