Dlamini: Public sector wage deal not enough

Cosatu President Sidumo Dlamini has called on workers to continue fighting.

Sidumo Dlamini. Picture: Official Cosatu Facebook page.

JOHANNESBURG - Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) President Sidumo Dlamini says the wage agreement reached between unions and the government is not enough and has called on workers to continue fighting for a living wage on the shopfloor and in the streets.

Last night the state, Cosatu unions and the Independent Labour Caucus reached a three-year wage settlement of 7 percent, with medical aid contributions of 28.5 percent, up from 25% before.

But he believes the state can afford to give more.

Dlamini says union leaders must remain vigilant about the new housing deal now that they have settled on the wage agreement.

"They have signed but it doesn't mean they have to lower their guard in terms of negotiating those matters still outstanding, including the housing. It's still going to be critical."

Dlamini says the state can give more, but it's up to workers to fight for a living wage.

"Workers obviously demanded more and they still need more that we believe the employer can afford. But for now we've signed the agreement."

The Cosatu boss says even though talks had been settled, the wage gap in the public sector remains significant.