Government has said it noted the call for a national strike and marches across the country by the South African Federation of Trade Unions but cautioned protesters to conduct themselves in a responsible manner.
Saftu, and its more than 20 affiliated unions, are set to stage protest marches all around the country today in protest at the basic minimum wage of R20 an hour.
Government, in a statement early on Monday, said marches had played a central role during the apartheid era and culminated into the transition from apartheid to democracy.
“Today, marches continue to play a role in the democratic South African society wherein people have a place to make their voices heard.
“The right to assemble and to protest in order to advance a particular cause is enshrined in the South African Constitution. However, it also equally caters for protestors to conduct themselves in a responsible manner. Peaceful protests are quintessentially a characteristic of a strengthened democratic and progressive society.”
Acting Government Communication and Information Systems director-general, Phumla Williams, said: “We call on all those participating in the marches across the various provinces to refrain from violence, destruction of property and intimidation. The rights of people who do not want to participate in the marches must be respected.” – African News Agency (ANA)