Cyril Ramaphosa. Picture: GCIS
Cyril Ramaphosa. Picture: GCIS

Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa has implored members of the South African Democratic Teachers Union (Sadtu) to protect the country’s institutions from attack and looting.

He urged union members attending Sadtu’s national general council to keep a close eye on the Public Investment Corporation (PIC), which he said he heard was being looked at "with dangerous eyes".

"You, as members of the union, must make sure it is protected because it manages your money," he said.

The PIC manages the pensions of public servants invested in the Government Employees Pension Fund and is under the spotlight following Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba’s suggestion to Cosatu that the Treasury could use its funds to bail out struggling state-owned enterprises (SOEs).

Ramaphosa said that workers had the responsibility to ensure public institutions were not used to achieve the political interests of certain people or to cover up failures.

He echoed sentiments expressed by Cosatu and the Federation of Unions of SA that there should be at least  two workers’ representatives appointed to the boards of the PIC and other SOEs.

"You have a say in how your money is being used … a lot needs to be fixed," Ramaphosa said to loud applause.

Speaking about the December ANC elective conference, Ramaphosa said the party needed to forge unity, but not at the expense of holding corrupt individuals to account.

He condemned the use of violence within ANC structures, as witnessed during the Eastern Cape elective conference when several delegates were injured in clashes between warring factions of the party.

"We must rid our movement of flying chairs and stop the spate of killings," he said.

mahlakoanat@businesslive.co.za

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