File Photo: IOL

PRETORIA – The Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) said it welcomed the decision of the Public Investment Corporation (PIC) Board to suspend its acting chief executive, Matshepo More, for allegedly interfering in matters related to the PIC Commission of Inquiry into impropriety, currently taking place in Pretoria.

In a statement on Wednesday, Matthew Parks, Cosatu’s parliamentary co-ordinator said this shows the extent of the lawlessness at the PIC.

“It confirms that too many in the PIC and elsewhere, simply view it as a slush fund to feed their insatiable appetites and not as the public asset manager to ensure the protection and growth of workers’ pensions and insurance funds,” he said.

He called on the PIC board to urgently refer the matter to the PIC commission to be dealt with. “The commission needs to act quickly and decisively to deal with any attempts by PIC managers to undermine the commission,” he said.  

He added that the Hawks and other relevant law enforcement agencies needed to be reeled in to deal with such attempts to sabotage the commission, which should include charging such persons with contempt of court and their immediate arrest and detention.

“Cosatu is pleased the NCOP is due to adopt the PIC amendment bill on Thursday 28 March. We will be engaging the President to urgently sign it into law. It will be a critical tool in the stabilising and cleaning up of the PIC. 

“Whilst the PIC Bill and efforts to halt the anarchy at the PIC have been delayed, for obvious and nefarious reasons for far too long, we are hopeful that the suspension of the CEO is a sign of government becoming serious about restoring public confidence in the beleaguered PIC,” explained Parks.

He was also of the view that worker representation on the board in deciding how to invest their pension and insurance funds, is a critical tool in the fight against corruption and the collapse of good governance at the PIC. 

“It is a fight that Cosatu will not give up on. If Minister Mboweni fails to include union representatives on the board, Cosatu will be forced to respond in kind to such an attack upon worker’s rights,” he said.