'Zuma divided tripartite alliance by signing pension bill'
The union has strongly criticised the president after he signed the Taxation Laws Amendment Bill into law.
JOHANNESBURG - The Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) says President Jacob Zuma has divided the tripartite alliance by signing the Taxation Laws Amendment Bill, which affects the withdrawal of pension funds and says its unions will campaign against the law ahead of the local government elections.
Cosatu says the African National Congress (ANC) has now risks losing the federation's support in the upcoming elections and has accused Zuma of undermining discussions at National Economic Development and Labour Council (Nedlac).
Experts say the new law does not represent a big shift away from the current system and is meant to simplify how retirement funds are managed.
Cosatu spokesman Sizwe Pamla says the State does not have the right to change pension fund laws, without consulting workers.
"No government has the right to interfere in how people should save and how much people save. Only workers can make that determination. So what they've said so far, is that they reject the law."
He says Zuma's decision is an attack on the alliance.
"By signing this law, the ANC has divided the alliance and isolated workers."
Pamla says this will undoubtedly affect the ANC's election campaign.
"They will be forced to defend their deferred wages which are the pensions. While the ANC will be encouraging them to campaign for its own electoral interests, workers will be looking after their own interests."
Cosatu says its senior leadership will discuss the law at its next executive meeting.
LISTEN: What does the new legislation on retirement income entail?