Cosatu eyes pension funds to rescue Eskom

Cosatu wants government workers and private pension funds to bail out Eskom. The labour federation also says the Public Investment Corporation could fork out R250-billion to save the ailing power utility. Courtesy #DStv403

CAPE TOWN - Cosatu wants government workers and private pension funds to bail out Eskom.

The labour federation also says the Public Investment Corporation could fork out R250-billion to save the ailing power utility but this, in turn, could mean taxpayers will have to be liable for another troubled state-owned entity.

The state-owned entity currently has a debt to the tune of R450-billion.

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Cosatu says it has a solution to how the R250-billion it wants from the PIC should be spent.

"Cosatu's rescue plan is to make sure that every cent is accounted for, the money is properly spent that the turnaround strategy for Eskom is proper. But we can understand the scepticism I think that as Cosatu we should have gone to every corner of the country to speak to our members," said Cosatu Parliamentary Officer Tony Ehrenreich.

Cosatu says much of the funding could be acquired from government's employee pension fund.

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The labour federation says this won't place employees at risk of losing their retirement money as government will be able to pay the shortfall.

"There's a section of business that has not endorsed this. The same people that made money out of the huge financial losses that took place in the 2008 financial crisis. Here you got the crooks in the financial services sector of South Africa wanting to deny South Africa the rights to five to 10-percent of retirement savings," Ehrenreich said.

Cosatu says it has already received support for its proposal from government.

It says the Public Investment Corporation should adopt a similar rescue plan to that of Edcon.

Last year, the PIC spent an estimated R1.2-billion saving 140, 000 jobs at the retail giant.

Source
eNCA