COSATU WCape condemns Manyi's racist statement

Posted March 2, 2011 By Tony Ehrenreich

Racist statement against coloureds condemned in the strongest terms

COSATU is outraged at the manner in which the Employment Equity legislation has been drafted, that gives the impression that Coloureds would lose their jobs in droves in the Western Cape. We are concerned at the Department of Labour putting out Legislation that could create this impression and call on the Department of Labour to withdraw the amendments and to reinstate the legislation that confirms that provincial demographics will be used to define employment equity targets.

The Department of Labour should also clearly clarify their intention to address the Employment Equity targets in the higher category of workers, as this is where the real problem is. The companies are still over employing whites into senior managerial positions, whilst there are many black [coloured, African and Indian] graduates not getting employment.

Solidarity, the DA and the media have tried to cause racial dissent by highlighting the focus on Coloureds, whilst underplaying the fact that we are going to insist that the EE targets are met for all race groups in all categories of work, with a special focus on Managerial jobs for Blacks [Coloureds, Africans and Indians] in senior Managerial positions, so that Employment Equity targets are met, in spite of the DA attempts to defend the whites.

COSATU believes that Jimmy Manyi's comments and attitude may have impacted on the legislation drafted, and this raises serious questions in his attitude and orientation to the race issue in South Africa. COSATU calls for an investigation into the conduct of Jimmy Manyi as it cast serious aspersions on his suitability for senior public office.

COSATU is further outraged at the statements by journalist Kuli Roberts, who made such derogatory statements about Coloured woman. These statements are both racist and sexist and should be condemned in the strongest terms. We believe that public should be protected against this attitude and call on the Press ombudsman to take the strongest possible action against such statements, whilst at the same time obligating the sensitive editing of material, to avoid these kinds of stereotyping.

Journalists making themselves guilty of statements should have the strongest disciplinary action taken against them. Any racial attacks on Minorities or statements that causes racial dissent must be carefully scrutinised, to guard against causing strife and marginalisation of any racial grouping.

COSATU and the Alliance will ensure that this draft legislation is repealed and that the interests of minorities are defended within our broader commitments to Employment Equity and Affirmative action. The intention of any legislation must be measured against the express commitment of the constitution to promote and enhance racial harmony.

Posted on