Picture: THE TIMES
Picture: THE TIMES

I suggest that your editorial on the role of trade unions is wrong on one point (“Extraordinary act of sacrifice is needed,” October 8). Workers are responsible, through the unions that represent them, for the government's reckless spending. Most of those unions are actually part of government as they are part of the tripartite alliance in the first instance.

As often noted, the ANC has bought the support of state workers using taxpayers’ money since soon after its inception in 1994. Not only are many overpaid, but a good many are also underskilled and underemployed. As a member of the governing party, the unions have, to say the least, acquiesced in a legislative policy that gives them excessive power in both the public and private spheres of our nation.

This situation is a substantial part of the reason for our economy's continued regression for the last 15 years. The public education system is stalled in mediocrity and inefficiency, the civil service likewise. In the private, tax-producing sector of the country, small- and medium-sized businesses are throttled by a plethora of regulations compounded by official incompetence and corruption. All because the “workers” have been protected by ANC policy, which they, in effect, dictate.

Robert Stone

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