Social Responsibility

Numsa holds social security conferenceSam Tsiane

Numsa held its first social security conference at the end of August. The conference considered government's social security reform discussion paper, surplus distribution, socially responsible investment, the Financial Sector Charter and other related matters. More than 50 worker trustees from different retirement funds in Numsa resolved on the following.

They supported the broad thrust of the social security reform discussion paper, but criticised it for being silent on the unemployed.

It recommended that the private sector must contribute 0,5% of their wage bill to insure the unemployed for their retirement.

Surplus distribution must be accelerated and Numsa must meet with Cosatu to speed up the process of the distribution of the engineering surplus. Service providers should simplify the language that they use to demystify investment.

Trustees must ensure that the bulking of money by service providers must be paid back into the Funds. Delegates noted that in this country only 1% of the R1,3 trillion that is invested is on socially responsible investment.

This compares poorly with developed countries where about 10 % is invested. Trustees agreed to increase it to acceptable levels or 5% as per the agreement at the Presidential Job Summit.

On medical aid, delegates endorsed the Numsa 1996 resolution on national health care insurance but said that in the short term, Numsa should set up its own medical aid.

The issue of trustee training was critically assessed. Delegates noted that often the training that is provided is inappropriate.

Instead funds should establish a relationship with training providers that are like-minded, progressive and SAQA accredited to prepare our trustees for the challenges ahead of them.

While it is important to separate union funds from retirement funds, however the union has played a critical role in the establishment of negotiated retirement funds.

The judgment against Ceppawu which separates worker trustees from the union is not appropriate. Numsa will therefore campaign for the amendment of the Pension Funds Act to recognise majority unions ie where the union has majority membership, it must be entitled to elect/appoint trustees.

Our struggle is not just about workplace issuesPeter Thobejane

Early this year we requested companies to provide us with their employment equity plans as required by legislation.

VAE SA, situated in Isando, has developed its own Masakhane programme which it included in its EEA plans. The main focus of the programme is to bring life to disadvantaged communities.

Numsa's EEA committee in the company drives the programme with the assistance of the Section 24 manager.

The programme kickstarted at Mmangweni Primary School in Tembisa. Through that programme the company and our EEA committee donated tables and chairs to the school.

This programme will be extended to other disadvantaged communities in the future. The other part of the EEA programme will focus more on the employment of disabled people to remove employment barriers to disadvantaged people.

Education Briefs Donations Bursaries

Numsa shows it cares!Numsa has donated 20 fax/photocopy machines to schools across the country and to the newly formed Zimbabwe metalworkers union.

"We thank your organisation for such a lovely donation which is going to help our school to be more productive for the years to come," wrote the principal of Khumbula High School in Kabokweni.

"The copy printer will help in alleviating bulk work currently experienced at the institution," wrote the principal of Moditela AM School in Hammanskraal. Numsa plans to donate computers as and when more become available.

Sactwu bursary fund hits R50mClothing union Sactwu's bursary fund is now 32 years old and since it started has paid out R50m in bursaries.

"This has allowed students from working class back grounds to gain university degrees and build a better life for themselves and it has injected important skills into the economy," said Sactwu general secretary, Ebrahim Patel.

Last year 1130 students were sponsored with an amount of R4,5m. About 83% of these students are at universities and universities of technology, 8% are at colleges and 9% at technikons. In 2006 152 students graduated.

In my opinion…Challenges in the public serviceKaya Yoko

We understand the frustration caused by some of the public service departments to our fellow comrades but that is not the only challenge.

For example in Port Elizabeth the health department downsized the staff by approximately one third in Dora Nginza hospital, subject to correction. It was reported that the staff is overloaded.

The facility's buildings were extended to improve the service. We understand that the public strike kicked in recently and it is evident that the department frustrates them.

At some stage this frustration leads to unwillingness but what about their fellow citizens who have no choice but to go to the public facility? There is a procedure that must be followed whenever one is aggrieved.

If the structure after procedural engagements decides to embark on a go slow that should be uniform,not restricted to certain individuals utilising that opportunity to fulfil their laziness.

It is disturbing to hear that a mother not even a day after she had delivered her baby was instructed by ‘EXCUSE ME’ nurse to bend up and down cleaning blood spots on the floor.

The nurse worked there. She knows who should do that. Fortunately she knows that her daughter is on a decent medical aid.

Where is ubuntu? In some instances you will find that in the queue, regardless of the seriousness of their injuries, a person in the administration will attend to their friend or relative first.

Comrades I think some kind of introspection is needed. Do you think socialism will bear good results when certain individuals are selfish, lazy and cruel?


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