POPCRU argues that South Africa has unfair and wrong disparities of income 1

POPCRU argues that South Africa has unfair and wrong disparities of income


The COSATU Living Wage Campaign has hit the nail on the wage deferential in the current conjuncture. Many workers are squeezed against the wall with rising cost of living which is inclusive of high transport costs, exorbitant housing and/or rentals and drunken food and clothing prices.


And we argue further that the living wage campaign is indeed “a cornerstone of a just and equitable society”. However, the trajectory facing the working class is still characterized by ‘poverty wages’


South Africa has allowed the wrong model of having a rich [upper crust] and poor [losers] salary structure to continue for while without changing it. This was because it continued to benefit those who are in senior management. “The average real monthly wage of workers declined by 23% from R3 558 to R2 744 or 2.6% per annum”[NALEDI].


We saw recently a post of a Commissioner for National Consumer Commission with a salary of R1 275 732 [R106 311 per month] as a direct picture that we are painting whilst in the same breath a post of an Inspector is supposed to earn a mere R149 874 p.a [R12 489, 50 per month].


In 2011 a post of a Chief Director pays around R830 502 per annum which is almost higher than a constable whose earnings is R40 000 in the same year in 2011. A minimum wages of a police officer is R7 000 a month and correctional officer is R7 050 and this is an insult to all our law abiding citizens, who continues to sweat to advance humanization of our citizenry against a backdrop of rising cost of living.


And in our view this is totally against the spirit of what was loudly said a while ago that our public servants are “Cadres” that should form the backbone of government acceleration of service delivery to all our masses. 


The majority of our workers at the coalface of service delivery at police stations, clinics, hospitals, schools, FET’s, Traffic Centres, Courts, and other government offices continue to bear the brunt of slave wages in the name of patriotism.


We are calling the Employers both in the private and public services to avoid lowering the morale of workers and restore the importance of Collective Bargaining Structures as enshrined in the Labour Relations Act Section 28(1) (a) (c) on conclusion of collective agreements and prevention and resolution of labour disputes respectively.


Bargaining Council in South Africa covers approximately 2, 5 million workers and we cannot allow the toiling classes power to be undermined as such.


A struggle for a living wage is within our reach and we shall remain steadfast for a real wage increase!


Aluta Continua!


Issued by:      

Norman Mampane

National Spokesperson

Tel: 0112424600/4615

Cell: 0720737959

Fax: 0866253054

Email: normanm@popcru.org.za


01 Marie Road    

Auckland Park



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One thought on “POPCRU argues that South Africa has unfair and wrong disparities of income

  • Miro Bagrov

    There is an old saying, “Those who have something will gain even more, however those who have very little will lose even what little they have.”

    Those who control the most resources have more negotiating power than those who have few resources. The fact that they control wealth, allows them to negotiate lower costs in all areas. Since no business is prepared to lose their richest clients. For this reason, no matter what discount incentives or grants one gives to workers, they always lose it in the long run to wealthier people. Eventually some employees even manage to get workers to work for free in this way, or even worse – cause the workers to pay the employer to work for them.

    Labour Brokers force bundle payroll cards with high bank costs and force them onto their workers who earn small wages. This is against the Consumer Protection Act. Other companies force their employees to buy uniforms to keep their job and pay their boss for information. This is unethical!

    Another problem to workers is information. Companies keep secret the earnings of employees. The accounting rules only require directors of large companies to disclose their earnings in financial statements. However, workers never read these documents.

    If workers knew how much others were earning, they would have more power to negotiate. Since they do not, they must be happy with what little they have. Possibly the best move a union can make is provide correct information to workers.

    Still, Marx’s rule holds firm – the price of a product is always higher than the price of labour and all other costs, therefore a worker is always running at a loss as long as the company is making a profit.