The South African Federation of Trade Unions (Saftu) and Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) have promised to fight government’s plans to reduce the public service wage bill.
They said Finance Minister Tito Mboweni’s Budget showed that government did not value workers and viewed them as easy targets.
The budget proposes slashing R160 billion from the state’s wage bill over the next three years.
Cosatu spokesperson Sizwe Pampla said this was a declaration of war.
“The reality is that consolidated government expenditure includes municipal transfers, it includes agencies like Sanral, Sassa and others but the minister doesn’t have a plan to fix these structures but is targeting public servants.”
Saftu’s general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi said there were other ways to rein in government’s expenditure.
“We will see more workers losing their jobs, we will see Eskom being a disaster and we will see most state-owned enterprises unable to get out of the black hole they were pushed in by the tenderpreneurs that were deployed.”
Both federation unions said they would fight any plans to reduce workers’ salaries.