Protesting Nehawu workers. File photo by African News Agency (ANA).

DURBAN -The National Education, Health and Allied Workers’ Union (Nehawu) warned on Wednesday that it would make the country "ungovernable" if any attempts were made to reduce salaries in the public sector. 

The union was reacting to comments made by Treasury's director-general, Dondo Mogajane, who said a 10% wage reduction in the public sector may have to be one of the options considered to cut costs.

"Nehawu sends a clear and unequivocal message to Mr. Dondo Mogajane that he must forthwith disabuse himself of even entertaining such an impossible 'option', if he understands what is good for himself and the government," said the union's spokesperson, Khaya Xaba. 

He said Nehawu would "never" enter into discussions to reduce salaries of workers in the public sector. 

"It is not an idle threat when we warn Mr Mogajane that we shall mobilise to shut down government indefinitely and render the system ungovernable," said Xaba.       

He said the country was experiencing economic stagnation "largely because of the Treasury’s dogmatic adherence to the failed and discredited Neoliberal macroeconomic policies".

"On the other hand, in addition to corporate mismanagement and corruption, we believe that Eskom has been deliberately run into the ground – in favour of the private Independent Power Producers (IPPs) - in order to render it unpopular as part of setting it up for a fire-sale."

Mogajane’s “option” to cut public sector salaries by 10% was a "no-go area not worthy of consideration", said Xaba. 

African News Agency (ANA)