COSATU statement on the VBS looting report

The Congress of South African Trade Unions has noted with utter repulsion the reports detailing the vulgar corruption that took place at VBS Bank. We are calling on the law enforcement agencies to act decisively against the identified culprits. These criminals should not be shown any mercy and they need to have their assets seized to send a clear message to all future criminals

The federation has also noted the biased coverage and phony outrage from some hysterical hypocrites in the media, who accidentally did not demonstrate the same level of hysteria when Steinhoff was looted.

Steinhoff liars and looters need to be treated the same way as VBS looters and not differently. COSATU is seriously worried about how white criminals, who loot are treated with kids gloves by the media and law enforcement agencies. We need to do one thing to criminals; investigate and prosecute them with the same vigour and commitment and not look at their race. There should be no holy cows.If we are going to fight corruption successfully we cannot afford to strongly condemn some corrupt actions and make excuses for others.

As a country , we also treat public and private sector corruption differently and that is a big problem for this continent and this country in particular. The effects of corruption in the public sector harm the poor by increasing the costs of public services that are supposed to be free.

Corruption in the private sector has got higher implications because of its ability to affect the whole economy and to bring the economy to its knees. In this continent, daily, money is being taken out of the country by multinationals through base erosion and profit shifting and the rich take their wealth to offshore trusts.

We do not see our law enforcement agencies using their might to deal with big companies and rich individuals. We can only have a successful partnership to fight corruption if we show the same level on intolerance for private sector corruption like we do for public sector corruption.

Issued by COSATU

Sizwe Pamla (Cosatu National Spokesperson)
Tel: 011 339 4911
Fax: 011 339 5080
Cell: 060 975 6794