TONY Ehrenreich‚ the Congress of South African Trade Unions’ (Cosatu’s) Western Cape secretary and ANC leader in Cape Town‚ has challenged his DA counterparts to match him in giving away half their income.

"I spend 50% of my income on social projects‚" Ehrenreich said on Wednesday.

"I know that (Cape Town mayor Patricia) De Lille and (Western Cape premier Helen) Zille both get huge allowances in addition to their multimillion-rand salaries‚ and I challenge them to declare their income and expenditure."

Ehrenreich made the same pledge in January 2015‚ and said he was renewing it because: "I cannot in good faith take a second salary whilst so many of our people are not given jobs."

He said he was paid R24‚000 by Cosatu and R26‚000 by the City of Cape Town‚ and received fees for speaking.

"The huge differences in income and resulting inequality between different sectors of our society are responsible for the breakdown in the social fabric of our society‚" he said.

"We need to hold leaders and leadership to a higher standard that promotes the values of equality and compassion. This greed that we inherited from apartheid is seducing many of our leaders and ruining our country with the deepening levels of corruption.

"This is a feature of leaders in the private and public sectors and increasingly in the Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) sector.

"We don’t restore our country with words‚ but with actions. I hope that my small action will go some way in demonstrating to other leaders and public servants what can be done‚ as well as to (encourage) the public at large to hold leaders to a higher standard of conduct‚ in line with our liberation promise in the constitution."

Ehrenreich said in the last year he had funded: transport for the HIV/AIDS project at Cosatu; monthly events for pensioners; sections of the Proudly South African campaign; protest marches to Parliament by schools; and matric camps‚ NGOs and individuals who needed assistance.

"The one personal indulgence that I have is being a partner in a holiday house in Kleinmond‚ where I have a family from the informal settlement living free of charge in the cottage‚" he said.

"I live in Uitsig‚ a sub-economic area in Elsies River‚ where every night is filled with gunshots‚ as well as the wonderful sense of neighbourliness of a township."

TMG Digital

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