Business 6.12.2017 05:07 pm

Public servants union pushes against raid of govt employees pensions

South Africa's Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba briefs the press in Pretoria on April 1, 2017

South Africa's Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba briefs the press in Pretoria on April 1, 2017

There has been a strong push against government’s plans to raid the PIC to bail out struggling companies under its control.

The Public Servants Association (PSA) on Wednesday, said that it would continue with its court action to secure control over public servants’ pension investments following the alleged failure by Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba to respond to the union’s demands.

The PSA said that Gigaba had failed to respond to its letters in September and in October written to engage with labour about the management of public servants’ pensions invested at the Public Investments Corporation (PIC) through the Government Employees’ Pension Fund (GEPF).

The PSA had requested Gigaba to amend the Memorandum of Incorporation to include GEPF representation on the board of the PIC and to fill three existing vacancies on the board with labour representatives.

The PSA also demanded that 80 percent of the PIC’s board must comprise of public servants and called for the removal of current board members with conflicting interests.

The union also wants full disclosure of non-listed companies that have already been granted funding by the PIC and the freezing of funding for new investments of this nature. The PSA furthermore requested more information on the basis for an independent forensic audit ordered by Gigaba.

Recently, there has been a strong push against government’s plans to raid the fund manager to bail out struggling companies under its control.

Gigaba responded to PSA’s letters last week Friday, indicating that a meeting would be scheduled with labour during the third week of January 2018.

But PSA deputy general manager Tahir Maepa said in a statement that Gigaba’s response did not address the specific issues raised by the PSA.

“The PSA is determined to ensure that public servants’ pensions are protected, and to make sure PIC management team is not forced into shady deals,” Maepa said.

“The union will thus continue with court action in this matter. It is unfortunate that the PSA has to continue with legal action to enforce compliance by the minister in a matter that is already governed by legislation.”

 – African News Agency (ANA)

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