Msebenzi, deep in the debt

Msebenzi, deep in debt

Sometimes one wonders why some workers wear only label clothing – Nikes and Adidas, drive nice cars and have luxurious houses whilst they are underpaid and for increases they have to toyi-toyi. They live to compete with each other and to try and make an impression. They are those without much responsibilities, mostly young workers in their 20s and 30s, who tend to live this costly life.

Unfortunately this has led to debt. When the river runs dry, they run to omashonisa (loan sharks) so as to maintain their status of being “Mr/s No Problem”. And this always comes back to haunt them.

Reading one of our Sunday newspapers I came across an article about money matters and how to handle your finances. Since we are approaching the festive season and bonuses will be overflowing in the banks, I thought about my co-workers who have been blacklisted and their credit cards and ID books are not with them, those in the Bodyshop, Assembly and Paintshop in VW and other companies. Let me share this advice with them.

Remember, credit is just your own money – in advance. Whatever you spend needs to be paid back, plus interest.
Stop using your credit card – this means you should use cash to pay for necessities.
Develop a repayment plan; always do a budget before using money.
Don’t borrow to pay debt.
Invest in items that appreciate in value.
Avoid micro-lenders at all costs, they always ruin you financially.

This simple plan I would recommend for workers in circumstances of financial madness. This will make them responsible spenders – for their peace of mind and their financial security. Msebenzi, this is simple, do not simplify what is complicated or complicate what is simple. Don’t look away; and never ever forget that this is your life, your children and family. Money makes man mad!

Employer takes on working hoursDisagreements over working arrangements at Germiston company, Ictus Equipment have resulted in the dismissal of 11 workers. Peter Kgoadiangoato Thobejane reports.The first disagreement arose in April when management instructed workers to come to work on two Saturdays. Workers said this contravened the collective bargaining agreement. When workers did not come to work, the company charged them and fired 11 of them.

When workers rejected management’s proposal to work on April 27 and get April 13 as a paid holiday in exchange, management just instructed them. This sparked the second incident.

Workers believed that management’s action was politically motivated. April 14 was voting day and all workers had registered in Gauteng as voters. They believed that management was trying to chase workers away from where they had registered. They also felt that to work on Freedom Day (April 27) was an insult to them, especially as this year the country was celebrating 10 years of democracy.

When workers came to work on April 13, the company stopped them from working. And when they came to work on April 26, the company again locked them out.They then suspended shop steward Nathi Khanyile

The shop steward took the issue to his Local Shop Steward Council. The council decided to send a delegation from the region to meet with management.But the meeting failed to get results. Instead it ended in a physical fight. Cosatu regional chairperson, Phutase Tseki, had his jacket torn to pieces.The local shop steward council then took a decision to march to the company on July 29. “The employer was not respecting the democratic principles of South Africa,” said Tseki.

Fellow workers march

The Cosatu regional chairperson led the march of about 700 workers from Haggie Rand, Rand Scrap, GE Hudson and Macsteel, to the company.The marchers demanded the dismissal of the “racist labour consultant.because ??? she or he??? (can’t have both!!!) was not there to build a relationship between the partners but to destroy Numsa in the company and was milking the company at the expense of Numsa,” said Tseki. They also demanded the unconditional reinstatement of all 11 Numsa members.

The company was given seven days to respond to the demand. Seven days lapsed with no response.” Numsa through Cosatu should pursue this campaign very seriously,” says Tseki. He is worried that this particular consultant is involved with three other Numsa companies. “If we lose this matter, they will jump to the other three companies using the same strategy,” Tseki says.